Book Review: The Railwayman's Wife by Ashley Hay

In Thirroul in 1948, people chose their dreams through the books in the railway's library. Annika Lachlan searches for solace after her life is destroyed by a single random act. Roy McKinnon, who found poetry in the mess of war, has lost his words and his hope. Frank Draper is trapped by the guilt of those his treatment and care failed on their first day of freedom. All three struggle with the same question: how now to be alive?
The Railwayman's Wife is superbly written. I felt as though Ashley Hay's writing was very visual, she describes things in great detail, down to the way light falls on an object. It is quite cinematic as it is so easy to conjure up images of the world created on the page.
The book is very much about love and loss. Annika Lachlan endures an awful tragedy at the beginning of the book and she knows her life will never be the same again. Entering into her new life, she encounters Roy McKinnon and Dr Frank Draper, both returned from war, they are almost mourning their old lives as due to what they have seen and experienced, life will never be the same for them either.
Ashley Hay writes in the present tense which I don't usually enjoy but in this instance it just added to the vivid feel of this book. You feel as though you are right there, experiencing the story with the characters.
The Railwayman's Wife is a thought provoking and interesting read. This is Ashley Hay's sixth book and I found her writing style to be particularly accomplished, I would highly recommend this author.

Dot Scribbles Rating: 4.5/5
Pages: 320 
Publisher: Allen and Unwin

Thank you very much to the lovely Sam at Allen and Unwin for sending me a copy of this book, The Railwayman's Wife is out on January 2nd!


Jo said...

This sounds like my sort of read. Will look out for it.

Nikki-ann said...

You always pick the good books! Another one to add to my ever-growing TBR tower :)

All the best for 2014! :)

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