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Bay of Fires

3.03  ·  Rating Details ·  342 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
Sarah Avery's reckless behavior has cost her a job, her boyfriend, and the independence she desperately craves. Reluctantly home for the holidays in the tiny seaside town where her parents live, her hopes for calm are shattered when she finds the body of a young female backpacker, washed up on the shore. A year earlier, another woman went missing and hasn't been seen ...more
Hardcover, 376 pages
Published March 12th 2013 by Reagan Arthur Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Aug 12, 2015 Margaret rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What I liked about this story was that the solving of the mystery, while central to the characters’ behaviour, ultimately plays second fiddle to the interactions between the characters themselves. This could be the reason why I’m not all that fond of plot driven mystery stories – there’s enough of that on T.V. for me to feel sated with murder and mayhem without reading about it, too.

There was a moment early in the book where I almost abandoned it – much like driving for hours to a campsite to ar
Feb 16, 2013 Jenny rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013
I have just finished this and feel very disappointed. The writing, technically speaking, is excellent and deserves a 4-5 stars - as does the characterization - but the story barely makes a 2. Bay of Fires is touted as a murder mystery, and while there is a dead body and someone with a guilty secret, the author pays little attention to building suspense and infusing menace into her plot, which it desperately needs. Instead she focuses on describing fish and wind / dust-swept landscapes, and bangs ...more
Mar 05, 2013 Elaine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was slightly disappointed in this book. The blurb sounded exciting.... the dead body of a woman is washed up on the beach, a year after another young girl has gone missing. It started off quite well but then just seemed to move really slowly. I found it disjointed in parts and boring in others. I wasn't really able to relate to the main characters and I kept waiting for something to happen and nothing really ever did. The ending was also quite anticlimactic. Overall it was an easy read but not ...more
Sarah Avery had returned to her parents’ home in the Bay of Fires on the east coast of Tasmania, after a turbulent break-up with her boyfriend, and the quitting of her job at a barramundi farm in Queensland. It was the Christmas holidays and her sister Erica was also home, with her long-time boyfriend Steve. Sarah wasn’t coping with the trauma that was keeping her awake at night, and took to drinking way too much. She also fished day in and day out, alone and happier without company. So when a ...more
May 13, 2013 Elizabeth rated it did not like it
This was a book that suffered from a form of bipolarity. It was either a love story in which the main characters were interested in solving a murder mystery, or it was a murder mystery in which the main characters happened to be looking for love, but either way, the result was a disjointed, hard to follow story where the details didn't seem to make sense and I could have read only the last 60 pages or so and understood the entire plot arc of the story.

After finishing the story, I found out that
I just want to know if Grumpy the Cat is okay! Is that too much to ask?
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Sarah Avery has returned home to Tasmania in secret, silent disgrace. She's broken up with her boyfriend and quit her job at a fish farm in Queensland, and is back in time for Christmas. Her family has a beach shack in the isolated Bay of Fires national park and head there every year for Christmas and New Year's. Her parents are there: Philippa, or "Flip" as she's known, a pharmacist; and Dr John Avery, a history professor at the university. Her younger sister Erica as well - a flight attendant, ...more
Jennifer (JC-S)
‘The storm broke the night before the body of the second missing woman was found.’

The body of a female backpacker washes ashore in the Bay of Fires on the east coast of Tasmania, a year after a teenage girl went missing. This is an isolated holiday community: some families have holidayed there annually for years. Everyone knows everyone else, everyone has an opinion about who might be responsible, and a number of people have secrets they’d rather keep to themselves.

Sarah Avery’s parents have a s
Orbs n Rings
Mar 07, 2013 Orbs n Rings rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
A mystery novel with an unconventional twist.

I found Bay Of Fires quite a refreshing change from other stuffy mystery novels. In Bay of Fires you have Sarah Avery a free-spirited soul who loves spending her time fishing the beaches of the bay on the Tasmania coast. You also have a community of dysfunctional individuals who come together to spend their Summers on the Bay of Fires. And then there is the mystery of the young female tourists, one who went missing and the other who shows up dead and
Aug 16, 2014 Leanne rated it it was amazing
Bay of Fires is situated on Tasmania’s east coast. It received its name from Captain Tobias Furnes in 1773 when he sighted many fires lit along the coast, leading him to believe that the area had a large population. It is this gorgeous part of Australia that Poppy Gee sets her first novel, a murder-mystery. The body of a backpacker washes ashore in the Bay of Fires, a small, close-knit community and so begins our journey with Gee. Sarah Avery is a local, returning to the Bay of Fires after a ...more
While I think this was reasonably well-written, I just did not warm up to this book. I wondered about that as I was reading and it wasn't the writing style, although I did find it to be a bit jarring at times (some people have called it disjointed, which I did not feel quite so strongly). While that could have been part of my tepid feeling towards the book, I think that the bigger issue for me was that I did not particularly like any of the characters.

Sarah's introductory views of friends and fa
Sandy Sexton
Jul 10, 2016 Sandy Sexton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: australia
This novel, set in Tasmania, was a mystery with an engaging plot, but it was much more than that. The description of the setting was convincing, showing the beauty of Tasmania's east cost. The characters were interesting and well drawn, and there were non-judgemental glimpses into their relationships and personal lives which which explored human experience.

Like Dick Francis, we are given an insider's look into people's occupations - the life of a newspaper journalist and the role of a fish farme
Apr 05, 2013 Katie rated it did not like it
There is something about the writing in this book that does feel "Tasmanian", and I will give Poppy one more chance to impress me with her writing, as it had so much potential, but speaking as a native of Tassie, the inaccuracies made my head spin.

What civic square does anyone cross to get to the restaurant mentioned? Is she perhaps talking about Salamance Place/Market, which is a road/thoroughfare when the Saturday market isn't running?

And as for any Tasmanian journalist who needs to have Boon
Dina Roberts
Jun 17, 2014 Dina Roberts rated it liked it
Shelves: australian
I thought this book was interesting and well-written, but I didn't feel much of a connection to it. The mystery in the story kept my attention, but I didn't really love any of the characters.

The story takes place in a small coastal town in Tasmania. A dead body is found on the beach. A reporter, a fishing farmer, and other folks in town try to figure out whether the cause of death was murder or an accident. And if it's murder, is there a connection between this death and the young woman who disa
Feb 15, 2013 Katej rated it it was amazing
I picked this book up because I thought it would be interesting to read a novel with a local flavour and I've been on a mystery novel kick lately. I'm so glad I did, I loved every page. The story was compelling, the characters interesting and well developed and the mystery gripping enough to keep me turning pages long after bed time. I'm definitely looking forward to more from Poppy Gee.
Josephine Pennicott
It was my pleasure recently to be on a ‘Something Rotten in the Apple Isle’ panel for Sisters in Crime where I met Poppy Gee and Livia Day aka Tansy Roberts. We were all raised in Tasmania and chose to set our mystery/crime books there. I loved this panel because not only did I get to meet both writers, but it was fascinating to hear how Tasmania shaped all our work. Livia said how impressed she was that when Poppy was talking about the murder of Victoria Cafasso that semi-inspired her book, I ...more
Nov 18, 2016 Lauren rated it liked it
This story meandered a bit too much for me. The murder plot was so buried but the writing was pretty good.
Reluctantly visiting her family for the summer holidays, Sarah finds herself stuck in a remote bay in Tasmania. But when a body washes up on a shore, belonging to a Swedish tourist Sarah spoke to the other day, her curiosity is roused and she seeks answers, aided by journalist Hall Flynn.

I was looking forward to reading this. This was fourth book in a row I read that was set in Tasmania. The first three novels – Danielle Woods' The Alphabet of Light and Dark , Favel Parrett's Past the Shallows
May 18, 2016 Kristy rated it really liked it
Perfect Summer Reading Material

When temperatures soar, and holiday mode kicks in, nothing in my mind is better than a good book read on the beach (or on reclined on a couch with the fan churning overhead), icy drink in hand. The criteria for a summer read (for me anyway) is that it should have a good pace to it, transport me to another place and captivate me with it's characters. Add a crime or mystery to the story and I am in my happy summer reading space.

Bay of Fires ticks all these boxes. For
I always enjoy coming across a new author and Poppy Gee has made a solid debut with her first novel Bay of Fires. Set in the region of that name in rural Tasmania, Bay of Fires is the story of a small community struggling to come to terms with the reality of a murderer in their midst. In just over a year two young women have met with foul play in the Bay of Fires area. The first, a teenage surfer simply disappeared without a trace. While disconcerting, it is not too alarming given there were ...more
Sep 22, 2016 Mary rated it really liked it
This book was a dollar store find; glad I picked it up. Mystery set in the Bay of Fires in Tasmania. (Google it!) Some character and plot incoherence, but only a minor distraction from a juicy mystery and characters you root for, plus a few who are fun to hate. Especially enjoyable as a way to learn a little about Tasmania; writer is from there. Poppy Gee's first novel; I hope for another.
Helen McKenna
Bay of Fires in Tasmania is a place where people come every summer to enjoy a simple beach holiday either in their own shack or at the campground. Quiet, idyllic and isolated it seems like a very unlikely place for a murder. Yet in the space of just over a year two young women (of remarkably similar appearance) have met with foul play. Young surfer Chloe simply disappeared without a trace after telling her family she was going surfing and Swiss backpacker Anja's body was discovered washed up on ...more
Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
* 3.5 stars

The Bay of Fires is picturesque coastal area in which I have always wanted to visit in Tasmania, so when I came across this book with the same title, I was very keen to see what the Author had to offer the reader about the area. It opens with the discovery of a body of a bikini clad woman and it is soon revealed that the body is that of a Swiss tourist. This stretch of beach is no stranger to foul play, with a young girl going missing, her body never found, from the area only a year p
May 07, 2013 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is possible that the reader of a lot of mystery fiction could come to BAY OF FIRES with a predisposition to like it very much. It's an unusual twist on what is, frequently, a rather formulaic style. More importantly, it's a lot more about the people involved in a community than the tragic death.

The story revolves around Sarah Avery, who was second on the scene when the bikini-clad body is found on the beach. She and her family are long-term holiday residents at the Bay of Fires, so they were
The Bay of Fires is a sleepy, tiny beach community on the Tasmanian Coast. Sarah Avery's family vacations there each Christmas, piling into a shack to enjoy the beaches and the fishing. The community is comprised of several families that have fallen into a pattern of gossip, abalone bakes, surfing, and sunbathing. However, a couple of years ago, a teenage girl disappeared from Bay of Fires without a trace. The people have tried to move on, but are jerked back to the reality that paradise may not ...more
Carolyn O
Sep 25, 2013 Carolyn O rated it really liked it
Here's the setup: Sarah, after some bad decisions, ends up at home for the holidays, unsure what to do next. While she's thinking it over, she's one of two people to discover a young woman's body on the beach, and for the next week, she and a down-on-his-luck reporter try to solve the mystery of the young woman's disappearance.

Now, before I read Ms. Gee's novel, I knew nothing about Tasmania, other than that it is an island and the namesake of a small, fierce marsupial creature. But one of this
'Tasmania and the Snotty Trevally'

This book is richly peppered with life on the island, the flora, fauna and fish - from the red watarahs and flexing kangaroo tails to the flame trees. As the reader you are really looking in on this small community, idyllically nestled amongst the dunes, looking out to sea.

Two women have disappeared, Chloe Crawford some months ago and just recently the body of Anja Traugott washes up onto the beach. Hall Flynn, roving reporter and Sarah Avery, visiting with her
Jill Robertson
Any book set in Tasmania gets my vote! I loved the lyrical descriptions of the beauty and dangers of the far north-east coast, the quirky characters and the murder mysteries. I enjoyed the book (where I noted other reviewers did not) precisely because of its unconventional approach - while there were murders to solve, their resolution was slow and gradual; the love interest was painfully told; the main character was flawed and not a ravishingly beautiful girl ( I did want to shake her sometimes ...more
Nov 30, 2013 Gerda rated it liked it
This book was quite enjoyable and has made me want to visit the Bay of Fires. It has beautiful descriptions of the area and the author seems to know a lot about fishing in the area. Having said that, it did wonder at some stage about the amount of alcohol consumed by just about every character in this book but especially the main characters, Sarah and Hall. It seems that drunken parties are the norm during the Christmas break in this part of Tasmania.
It does makes sense when you get to the end
Sep 07, 2016 Alicia rated it it was ok
Here's the thing: I found this book to be extremely well written. It wasn't spellbindingly enthralling and I probably stopped and started reading it too many times but every time I would go back, I would think to myself how good it was. I thought there were too many characters (again, if I had stuck through like a normal person, I probably would have remembered them all) and I just didn't really care about the conclusion. I want to give Poppy Gee 5 stars for her writing and myself 0 stars for ...more
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Poppy Gee was born in Launceston, Tasmania in 1977. She spends every summer with her family at their shack in the Bay of Fires.

She has worked as a journalist, editor and book reviewer and currently teaches journalism and creative writing. Poppy lives in Queensland with her husband and two beautiful children. She has nearly completed her next novel, another literary thriller set in the Tasmanian s
More about Poppy Gee...

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