Mish's Reviews > Past the Shallows

Past the Shallows by Favel Parrett
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Jun 16, 15

bookshelves: australian-authors, favourite, fiction, 2011, drama, library-friends-books
Read from October 04 to 07, 2011, read count: 1

This is a heartbreaking story of two young brothers, Miles and Harry who live alone with their widowed father in a run down cottage on the coast of Tasmania.

Their father is an abalone fisherman who drinks excessively, has a violent temper, and often physically abuses his sons. There is hardly any food but boys do the best they can with what they have with some help from people nearby.

Harry, the youngest of three brothers is left alone during the day while the middle brother Miles and his dad are out on the fishing boat. Harry gets restless and bored and passes the time by wandering around alone to his friend Stuart’s place or exploring along the coast.

Still grieving over the death of his mother, Miles endures the full force of his father physical and mental abuse day and night. He is constantly protecting himself and Harry from his father’s drunken beatings, or his erratic behaviour on the boat. You can tell by the sweet voice of young Miles that it’s taking its toll on him and the only joy he has from life is when his older brother Joe takes him out surfing.

The abuse in the story was so difficult to read. It’s really hard for me comprehend how someone could inflict so much pain to another human, let alone their own child. It’s horrific and it really saddens me, but unfortunately these things do happen.

The ending was gut wrenching and shocking. So much so that I couldn’t help but shed a tear. I think Favel did a superb job with the writing. Her sentences were short and simple and effective. You could visualise the beautiful coastline, and some of the haunting and dangerous seas. For a little book it was so damn powerful – it was brilliant.
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Reading Progress

10/05/2011 page 95
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Comments (showing 1-5)




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Michael Will have to read that


Mish That’s great Knowledge, it is worth it. She’s a very talented writer.


Brenda I think I might have to bump that one up near the top of my list too Mish! Great review!


Mish Thanks Brenda, it is a wonderful book. It certainly left me thinking about it long after I finished it


Brenda I've just reserved it at my library...I'm #5 in the queue:) Thanks again:)


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