* Copy courtesy of HarperCollins Australia *
Ache by Eliza Henry-Jones is an Australian novel that accurately depicts the dialogue and country lifestyle in a small town in a way that often reminded me of a Tim Winton novel. Set one year after a bushfire devastated the small mountain community, Ache is about family, community, grief and recovery. The regeneration and recovery of the environment and wildlife is just as important as that of individual community members. Readers will also enjoy the way in which main character Annie's vocation as a vet is incorporated in the story.
I loved the setting of the novel, the juxtaposition of country and city and the individual growth and development of the main characters, however, being a primarily character-driven novel it did leave me wanting a little more from the plot.
Eliza Henry-Jones is a talented and accomplished writer living in the Yarra Valley in Victoria and with a new YA novel out this year called P is For Pearl, has certainly made her mark.
I recommend Ache for any reader wanting to discover an uplifting and uniquely Australian novel and explore life in a rural community recovering from a trauma.
My rating = ****