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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

A CRIME UNSPEAKABLE. Australia, 1919. Quinn Walker returns from the Great War to the New South Wales town of Flint: the birthplace he fled ten years earlier when he was accused of a heinous act. A LIE UNFORGIVABLE. Aware of the townsmen's vow to hang him, Quinn takes to the surrounding hills. Here, deciding upon his plan of action, and questioning just what he has returned for, he meets Sadie Fox. A BOND UNBREAKABLE. This mysterious girl seems to know, and share, his darkest fear. And, as their bond greatens, Quinn learns what he must do to lay the ghosts of his past, and Sadie's present, to rest.…


by Chris Womersley

Overall Book Review:

Bereft is a haunting and emotionally-charged tale aboutone man’s desperate quest for redemption. With poetic wording and vivid scenery, readers will find it easy to envision battle-worn Quinn as he retraces his painful past through the Australian countryside. Author Chris Womersley sets a fast and urgent pace and laces the story with rich and interesting symbolism. As the plot progresses and Quinn’s time seems to be running out, the book gives off palpable feelings of dread and despair. Mystery after mystery make Bereft a true thriller, yet some shocking and gruesome content may not be the type of page-turner some readers desire.

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Sterling Publishing

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language: 6 religious exclamations; 22 mild obscenities; 5 derogatory names; 5 scatological words.

Violence/Gore: A character has flashbacks of serving on the battlefield; deaths are reported without detail due to flu, war, and murder; an abortion is implied; a character trips and knocks out his tooth; a character purposely cuts himself in the shape of a cross; a frightening scene occurs involving a seance; two non-detailed scenes of suicide occur; a lamb is gruesomely slaughtered with details provided; a child is raped and murdered in an extended scene (1 page).

Sex/Nudity: a character remembers soldiers seeking prostitutes during the war; an affair between two adults is implied; a character reports that several girls were raped without details provided; two characters engage in sex without details provided; a child is brutally raped in an extended scene (1 page).

Mature Subject Matter:

Death, serious illness, suicide, war, rape, murder, witchcraft.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

A main character smoke cigarettes throughout the novel.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

My mother was the one who sparked my love of books. Long before school instruction, she sat me down and taught me to read. My childhood was filled with trips to the library and bookmobile to find great books. My first loves were The Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Pippi Longstocking series by Astrid Lingren. Now as a mom and speech pathologist, I am constantly looking for good, clean books to use at home and in therapy. I enjoy reading many different genres, but my favorites are usually historical fiction. I married my best friend, the “boy next door”, and we have a beautiful little girl who we often find sprawled out on the floor, flipping through picture books. Together our family likes to swim, run and play tennis. Besides reading, I also love to bake, garden and travel.