I heard voices talking last night. I've never heard my father talk to someone else. Not that I can remember. I was in bed, and I heard my father's voice first. He was talking to someone, and then I heard another man with a deep voice. The man got angry, I could tell, even though I couldn't hear exactly what he was saying. Then my father said, 'I'd kill you first.'
On his eleventh birthday, Jacob's father gives him a diary. To write about things that happen. About what he and his father do on their farm. About the sheep, the crop, the fox and the dam. But Jacob knows some things should not be written down. Some things should not be remembered.
The only things he knows for sure is what his father has taught him. Sheltered, protected, isolated. But who is his father protecting him from? And how far will his father go to keep the world at bay?
All too soon, Jacob will learn that sometimes we all have to do terrible things.
From the bestselling author of WIMMERA and THE RIP comes an unforgettable novel that explores the darkness in our world with the light only a child can find.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Cut off from the world, 11-year-old Jacob knows only what his gruff, mysterious father has taught him on their isolated farm—but his narrow perspective on life is about to be shattered. Wimmera author Mark Brandi perfectly captures the voice of young Jacob, relating each new seismic revelation across the sparse, clipped sentences of the boy’s diary. There are even simple drawings to help chronicle his experiences as dark family drama looms. Picking away at the bonds of trust, The Others is a taut, suspenseful read, building to a startling finale that takes the coming-of-age tale to new extremes.
Beautifully written once more
Italian-born Australian. Grew up in rural Victoria. Studied criminal justice, worked at that, then turned to writing. Wimmera (2017), received a number of awards and nominations. The Rip (2019) received considerable crucial praise, including from me for what that’s worth.
Eleven-year-old boy lives with father on an isolated property in “the bush.” Mother died when when he was very young; his memories of her are vague. His father, who shuns outside contact and talks of a plague that made the outside world unsafe, home schools him and gives him a diary for his birthday. The narrative is the boy’s description of day-to-day events, the animals, the crops, the drought yada yada, overlain with remarkable intuition for age. Eventually he escapes, and ends up in Hobart. (Escape to Hobart: the definition of paradox)
The first person narrative, while linguistically simple and childlike, is highly evocative. An undercurrent of tension builds slowly. The prologue chapter gave away the denouement for me.
Beautifully written once more by Mr Brandi, although my least favourite among his three published novels. I would have left out the above mentioned introductory chapter, but Mr Brandi is the published author and I’m just a cranky old white male reader.
Just start reading…
Don’t read any reviews that tell you anything about this book. Trust me. Buy it. And fall headlong into the (disturbing) pages.
this book was well written but it dragged on quite a bit. would like to have read more about after he moved into town.