04 October, 2013

Book Review: Thursday's Child

From Goodreads: Through the long years of the Great Depression, Harper Flute watches with a child's clear eyes her family's struggle to survive in a hot and impoverished landscape. As life on the surface grows harsher, her brother Tin escapes ever deeper into a subterranean world of darkness and troubling secrets, until his memory becomes a myth barely whispered around the countryside.

Thoughts: Sonya Hartnett does not write cheery, happy books. No, instead she complex, dark, thoughtful stories that leaves her reader shocked and bleeding - I love it! Her real strength is in her characters, so simply drawn but with such depth you feel you would know them the moment you saw them.
She frequently uses the Australian landscape to punctuate the desolation felt in her stories - the stark, dry landscape, the tough, suspicious people it breeds. If I close my eyes, I can see the Flute family standing in front of me, sunburnt and dusty, squinting into the sun, sunbaked earth all around them.
Like most of her books, Thursday's Child is character driven. The story happens around the people in it, with seemingly every day events taking on greater meaning as the story builds to it's climax. In less talented hands the story would drag and falter, but Hartnett's characters keep you there with them, watching as their lives fall apart, sharing with them the belief that finally, eventually it must get better. Hartnett is, without a doubt, one of Australia's most talented writers.

Challenges: Aussie Author Challenge.