Category: Australia and New Zealand 5 out of 5s

Jane Harper’s — The lost man *****

Jane Harper’s — The lost man *****

Here’s one for those who love mysteries. When Cam is discovered dead from dehydration near a stockman’s grave in outback Queensland, his brothers, Nathan and Bud are suspicious. Cam’s well stocked car is parked nine kilometres away, but he had no water with him. Cam was well aware of the dangers in the forty plus degree Australian semi-desert. Something doesn’t add up. But when the police arrive on the scene and take his body for an autopsy, they find nothing to suggest murder. But Cam is not convinced and his son, Xander is also asking questions. What he discovers is not only exactly what happened, but a whole other life his brother lived that he was unaware of.

Hannah Kent’s — The good people *****

Hannah Kent’s — The good people *****

In the 1800s an Irish village, Nora loses her daughter, then her husband before she hires Mary to help take care of her grandson. Because her grandson neither speaks nor walks at age four, she pleads with the priest for help, but he turns his back on her. The women of the village blame the boy for their troubles, so Nora seeks help from Nance who has the “knowledge.”

This books starts a little slow, but is as captivating as Kent’s Burial Rites. We are taken into the minds of the villagers, from their family woes to their superstitions where they readily blame their misfortune on anyone but themselves.

Geraldine Brooks’ — People of the book *****

Geraldine Brooks’ — People of the book *****

Hanna is a rare book expert whose current job is to analyse and conserve a rare fifteenth century Hebrew manuscript. The book is saved despite the destruction of libraries in Sarajevo. After she discovers clues in the book’s binding, its mysteries send her on a journey of discovery until she locates the real saviours of this ancient manuscript.

There isn’t a novel by this Australian author I haven’t found intriguing, but this one’s my favourite.

Gregory David Roberts’ — Shantaram *****

Gregory David Roberts’ — Shantaram *****

Sentenced to nineteen years in prison, Roberts escapes from his Australian jail cell and heads to India. Robbed in Mumbai, he’s forced to live in the slums until his life in various illegal operations, lead him to a more comfortable life style.

This is a tale with its heart in the streets of Mumbai. The characters, the setting, Mumbai’s underworld and the gripping story make this an unforgettable tale. While this is a nine hundred plus page novel, I still didn’t want it to end.

Kathryn Heyman’s — The accomplice

Kathryn Heyman’s — The accomplice

When mutiny breaks out of the Dutch ship the Batavia, Judith is desperate to survive. The ship arrives near the Western Australian coast and sinks. Judith is one of a hundred survivors who make it to shore, but how they stay alive becomes a nightmare.

This harrowing tale is based on true events seen through the eyes of Judith.

Anna Smaill’s — The chimes

Anna Smaill’s — The chimes

Simon arrives in London after his parents’ deaths and soon finds a new family amongst a gang of scavengers who roam their turf in search of metal. He grips his bag of junk — items that trigger the only memories he holds and slowly discovers with the help of Lucien, that he has a gift that others do not hold. But the London of the future keeps most of its citizens ignorant. Can Simon’s gift free them from their simple lives?

A real page turner that was not only well written, but revealed a unique story.