This is a great read! It is a story about two families with very little money who share a large, wooden, rambling house. The house has been left to one family in a will, and they lease half to another family. Each family lives in one half of the house with a long hallway the dividing line. It is set in a time when Australia was a raw country and so were its people.
The author, Tim Winton, makes all the characters come alive on the page and you can almost sense the atmosphere in the house as children and adults clash and tensions build. Everyone knows what everyone else is up to on the other side of paper thin, dilapidated walls. Added to that, the house has ghosts. Tim Winton forgoes standard punctuation throughout the book, but it doesn’t detract from the story at all, just seems to enhance the settings.
I think this is a truly Australian story with its share of tragedy, religion, laughter and all too human flaws.
-Anne Frandi-Coory 5 October 2010