Sunday, October 8, 2017

The Lone Child, by Anna George

Staff review by Chris Saliba

Anna George's compelling novel about motherhood and the isolation it can bring.

Neve Ayres is thirty-eight, suddenly single after her partner Kris has left her, and to top it all off, she’s just had a baby. Alone, she lives in an imposing seaside house in the coastal town of Flinders. One day she comes into contact with a lone child on the beach. The child appears neglected, although she is with her mother. Neve is quick to judge the woman, but as the story develops, it becomes clear that the harried mother on the beach has serious struggles of her own. Neve becomes obsessed with the child. The action takes place over an Easter long weekend. As Neve’s days spent alone with her baby spread out, the isolation makes her start to question her own sanity.

Anna George’s second novel is a spellbinding page-turner, a mystery where all the threads of the plot finally resolve on the final page. The story is suffused with a wonderfully moody atmosphere and the sea, windy nights, cracking storms – almost like a Bergman film. Anna George has created a compelling novel about motherhood and the isolation and loneliness it can bring. While The Lone Child is written like a thriller, its grounding in personal experience gives it a great immediacy and authenticity.

The Lone Child, by Anna George. Published by Viking. ISBN: 9780670077748  RRP: $29.99

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