Amanda Ortlepp's second novel offers readers a glimpse into small town life in the Eyre Peninsula ... against a very sinister backdrop. Erin Travers has escaped an unhappy life in Sydney with her two teenage sons in tow and is looking forward to making a new life in the small, South Australian town that she remembers from her childhood. Her new neighbours are decent, a new lover may be on the horizon and most importantly she has returned to her childhood dreams of being an artist, and it would seem that she has real talent. But not everything about the move is happy, and something--or someone--from Erin's past is about to catch up with her ...
As a reader from South Australia, Running Against the Tide had one huge selling point for me and that was its sense of location. Even though Mallee Bay was fictitious it felt like this really could be a small South Australian town, and one that I would like to visit or at least read about. The story itself has a number of threads--Erin's past, the oyster thefts, Ryan the unhappy teenage boy and a stalker--and the story did not end quite as I expected it to. Overall, it was an entertaining enough read.
Recommended, especially to fans of Jodi Picoult.
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my reading copy.
PS Readers in country South Australian may be interested to know that Amanda Ortlepp is touring and visiting a number of towns this week--see the tour schedule below.