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The Water Underneath
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
A unique blend of literary road movie and murder mystery. 'They dragged her out of the lake at dawn. No jaw, one eye socket like some strange fish. The water was closing and closing, the centre blank as the tissue of a scar. Then, in a place a thousand miles from the ocean, they found something which might have been a seashell but which they knew was not. The lake gave birth regretfully, washing her up in slow burps.' A young woman and her baby go missing in an isolated Australian mining town. Two decades later human bones wash up in the local lake. The only clue is that a man driving a truck wearing a hat did it, in a town where every man wears something on his head. Twenty years later, Ruth returns to the place where she was born and where her mother was ostracised. Over that time an unexplored territory of guilty secrets centres on one man, Uncle Frank, whose silence has protected him but has also inflicted inconsolable wounds. The Water Underneath, told through the eyes of three women, separated by time, skin colour and allegiance, but united by their love of Frank, is about some of the conflicts which divide Australians, in the past and to this day.
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