Riptides by Kirsten Alexander
Penguin Random House Australia
Cost: $32.99
Words: 227

Review by Kate Younie @Big_little_words

In the Queensland summer of 1974 Abby Campbell and her brother Charlie reluctantly drive to their father’s farm. Rain is belting down and they are tired from travel and life. In the dark of the night they veer into path of an oncoming car, forcing it into a tree. The driver dies instantly. They pull the pregnant female driver from the car. But with weary minds and too much to loose, Abby and Charlie make the decision to drive away.

In the aftermath, stay-at-home Abby is confronted with a failing marriage to her husband Mark and resentment of a stalled career. She is drowning in the mundane routine of life and neglected by a workaholic, absent husband.

Charlie is desperate to get back to Bali, a place he finds solitude and distraction from the expectations of adult life. Being in love with his best friend’s girlfriend is also complicating life.

But the accident can’t be ignored. Charlie and Abby’s father is devastated crash. It starts the ripple that threatens to unravel all of their lives as their lie is exposed. This story is about choices and consequences of actions.

This is the second novel by author Kirsten Alexander. Her successful debut novel, Half Moon Lake, has similar themes to this … of family and connection. She has a fantastic knack of deconstructing the sometimes-fragile bonds that hold family together.

Available from Dymocks Hyde Park