The Crime Writers' Association

Gold 2012

Chris Womersley
Bereft
shortlisted
Quercus

Author website Amazon

Synopsis: 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.

The Judges said: “The setting is refreshingly original; after WWII a soldier returns to rural Australia to face the consequences of a crime he did not commit. With a powerful sense of time and location, this is beautifully crafted, and has a serious point to make about the aftermath of war.”

Chris Womersley was born in Melbourne in 1968. His fiction and reviews have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including Granta New Writing and The Age, and in 2007, one of his short stories won the Josephine Ulrick Literature Prize. His first novel, The Low Road, won The Ned Kelly Prize in 2008 for Best First Fiction. Bereft is his second novel.