This would simply have to be one of the most Wow books of the year. A story written so beautifully that it leaves you gasping that any author let alone a newbie could write with this breadth and intensity, use language that simply dazzles and paint portraits of her characters that are so real you could touch them is just a wonder.
The story itself is quite simple...set at the turn of the twentieth century, in a remote rural backwater, a lonely, heartsick Orchardist, named Talmadge opens his heart and life to two teenage girls who are troubled and on the run and there starts a page turning journey that takes its reader through almost every circumstance and happenstance that one could encounter, there is not a slow or tedious moment but as you move forward with the story your engagement with the characters deepens and you find that you are so invested emotionally that you have to keep reading to satisfy your longing to know what does come next.... there are twists and turns, most of which are unpredictable, not all this books characters are likeable, in fact some are downright ghastly but each never mind their motive or agenda will engage you, you will want to wrap your arms around some and kick others in the jacksie.
I particularly liked how the author revealed her characters layer by layer, unwrapping them with a gentle hand when needed and with a more forceful one when required. This is a character driven book and not since The Bird Sisters have I seen characters drive a story with quite this intensity or realism. This book can be very gritty but it is never less than a delight to read.
This book would make a wonderful gift and really it is suitable for all adult age groups. Available at all good Bookshops.