ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A gentle novel that interleaves two lives - that of young Susie, growing up in Melbourne and of Miss Kaye, moving into retirement from a career in caring for people with mental injuries. A life seen from two ends. Susie's story is set in a sepia-tinged Melbourne, living with her mother who suffers mental illness, precociously exploring the city with her more cautious childhood playmate Geoffrey, and with a growing disconnect from her father following the death of his wife, Susie's mother. A rebellious Susie moves to Sydney and spreads her wings and it is here where these two narratives intersect, with a devastating incident that is almost a black hole, no sound or light escaping. Like the title itself, the devastations here are in some ways all the more powerful for what is not said. Craig Kirchner
'My heart grew, then broke, then mended itself. A wise, funny, brave novel and a story that you will never want to forget.' Favel Parrett
An unforgettable story of loneliness, isolation and finding your way. Heart-wrenching, wise and wryly funny, this novel will make you kinder to those who are lost.
Miss Kaye works at The Institute. A place for the damaged, the outliers, the not-quite rights. Everyone has different strategies to deal with the residents. Some bark orders. Some negotiate tirelessly. Miss Kaye found that simply being herself was mostly the right thing to do.
Susie was seven when she realised she'd had her fill of character building. She'd lie between her Holly Hobbie sheets thinking how slowly birthdays come around, but how quickly change happened. One minute her Dad was saying that the family needed to move back to the city and then, SHAZAM, they were there. Her mum didn't move to the new house with them. And Susie hated going to see her mum at the mind hospital. She never knew who her mum would be. Or who would be there. As the years passed, there were so many things Susie wanted to say but never could.
Miss Kaye will teach Susie that the loudness of unsaid things can be music - and together they will learn that living can be more than surviving.