Bereft: A Novel

Front Cover
Scribe Publications, 2011 - Australian stories - 264 pages
It is 1919. The Great War has ended, but the Spanish flu epidemic is raging across Australia. Schools are closed, state borders are guarded by armed men, and train travel is severely restricted. There are rumours it is the end of the world. In the town of Flint, Quinn Walker returns to the home he fled ten years earlier when he was accused of an unspeakable crime. Aware that his father and uncle would surely hang him, Quinn hides in the hills surrounding Flint. There, he meets the orphan Sadie Fox — a mysterious young girl who seems to know more about the crime than she should. A searing gothic novel of love, longing and justice, Bereft is about the suffering endured by those who go to war and those who are forever left behind. 'Bereft is a dark, brooding story of war, family secrets and a man's search for justice. Chris Womersley knows how to shine light into the darkest corners of rural Australia.' – MICHAEL ROBOTHAM 'Bereft is a beautiful novel . . . Womersley writes with such compelling power it is barely possible to put the book down.' – DEBRA ADELAIDE

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - oldblack - LibraryThing

I have no idea of the genre in which this book belongs. It seems to belong partly in crime; historical; war; adventure; and fantasy (talking ants!). Gothic, some say. From my perspective it does none ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - siri51 - LibraryThing

Excellent - such a sad time ;1919 - returned soldiers, gassing injuries, flu epidemic, grieving families - Sadie and Quinn are unlikely friends Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Chris Womersley's fiction and reviews have appeared in Granta, The Best Australian Stories 2006, 2010 and 2011, Griffith REVIEW, Meanjin and The Age. His debut novel, The Low Road, won the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Fiction. His second novel, Bereft, won the Australian Book Industry Award for Literary Fiction and the Indie Award for Fiction, and was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award, The Age fiction prize and the Australian Literature Society Gold Medal. Internationally it was longlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2012, and was shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger Award 2012.

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