Renee Conoulty: Sixty Seconds by Jesse Blackadder


Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Sixty Seconds by Jesse Blackadder

 Inspired by the author's own family experience. The Brennans - parents Finn and Bridget, and their sons, Jarrah and Toby - have made a sea change, shifting from chilly Hobart to a sprawling purple weatherboard in subtropical Murwillumbah. Feeling like foreigners in this land of sun and surf, they are only just starting to settle when, one morning, tragedy strikes - changing their lives forever.

Determined to protect his wife, Finn finds himself under the police and media spotlight. Guilty and enraged, Bridget spends her nights hunting answers in the last place imaginable. Jarrah - his innocence lost - is propelled suddenly from his teens into frightening adulthood. As all three are pushed to the limit, questions fly: Who is to blame? And what does it take to forgive?

A haunting and ultimately redemptive story about what it takes to forgive.

Hey! Here's my review.

I’ve been meaning to read this book for ages. I found the concept intriguing but also confronting so I waited until I was in the right mood. The story is based on the author's experience of her little sister drowning in a backyard swimming pool. I was worried that I would sob my whole way through the book, but it wasn’t that type of story. It didn’t go into graphic detail and handled the topic sensitively (though I may have shed a tear or two near the end).

What I found most intriguing, from a fellow author’s perspective, was the use of POV in the story. It was told from three character’s POV. The teenage brother was written in first person, the father in third person and the mother in second. It’s rare to see second person used in fiction and I thought it worked well in this story. I listened to the audiobook edition and the male narrator was an excellent fit.



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