In the early 20th century, Jessie has been released from prison after being convicted of horse rustling. The condition of her release is that she is to be apprenticed to Fitz, a man she immediately has a bad feeling about. In the remote valley Jack Brown, an Aboriginal stockman, also comes into Fitz’s employ to help Jessie continue with illegal horse rustling. Disaster strikes the Fitz property and Jessie goes on the run with Jack Brown leading the chase.
First Impressions: The story is told from the perspective of a buried baby and this point of view is incredibly touching. Once the story gets going the pace is thrilling.
Highlights: I loved all the characters. Just when I thought I was spoilt with all the exciting characters, in walked Sergeant Andrew Barlow. The Seven Sisters settlement was a great addition to the atmosphere of the story (can’t say more or I will spoil it). The descriptions of returned WW1 soldiers with no farming skills living on isolated government granted farms was haunting.
If I was an editor: I would have liked the cracking pace to continue for the whole novel. As the chase continued through the second half of the novel the pace was still good but it took on a bit more of a melancholy feel.
Overall: Fantastic. A wonderful description of life in early 20th century Australia.
The Burial: 5 stars