I read at work, I read in bed, I read on the lounge, I read at lunch.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I didn’t want to put the book down. And that’s the simple truth.
I found writing this review more difficult than actually reading this book. Where does one start in their review when you are satisfied with the writer’s story?
The story line was simple to follow but the quest of vengeance, forgiveness and resolution kept me reading. The need for closure and forgiveness is something I too have sought after and although it is something that may be given or you finally gave yourself it doesn’t change the past nor what you can do about it.
Bereft is written in a way that captures the desolate and dusty Australian outback with honesty and commitment. The use of colourful imagery drawn out through Sadie’s character as she invites you into her world of magical fairies, talking animals and the whispers of the wind allows you to forget the sadden lives of those affected by The Great War.
One of the things that I applaud Womersley for in his writing, is his ability to get you feeling involved in the lives of the characters from the very beginning. The characters continually become exposed, a layer at a time, the further you go into the book the more you develop a relationship with these characters. You feel their pain. You feel their frustration. You feel their loss.
”From a returning soldier’s ache for a single orange to the abrupt disemboweling of a lost lamb, Chris Womersley’s bleak and merciless novel forces the reader to be present at every moment. There is little solace to be found and innocence is absent; even children and animals shoulder heavy burdens. But like all great literary fiction, Bereft aspires to go beneath the surface, beyond flimsy payoffs and superficial triumphs. In doing so it confronts such pillars as loss, longing and revenge, and sears itself into memory.”‘- Sam Cooney, freelance reviewer
This review doesn’t do the book justice. I can not simply tell you in detail the story of Bereft, of how it ends, the complete ins and outs of the characters in order to make you read the book, as this would be cheating the author.