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 are 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, people do the most 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.
Mark Brandi's bestselling novel, Wimmera, won the coveted British Crime Writers' Association Debut Dagger, and was named Best Debut at the 2018 Australian Indie Book Awards. It was also shortlisted for the Australian Book Industry Awards Literary Fiction Book of the Year, and the Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year.
Mark's second novel, The Rip, was published to critical acclaim in 2019, and his third novel, The Others, was shortlisted for the Best Fiction prize in the 2022 Ned Kelly Awards. His fourth novel, Southern Aurora, will be published in 2023.
Mark's shorter work has appeared in The Guardian, The Age, The Big Issue, and in journals both here and overseas. His writing is also sometimes heard on ABC Radio National.
Mark graduated with a criminal justice degree and worked in the justice system before changing direction and deciding to write. Originally from Italy, he grew up in rural Victoria. He now lives in Melbourne and is working on his next novel.