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In 1914, Tom Stott falls in love with Gracie O’Donnell, but their love is thwarted
by circumstance and war. Tom finds himself part of the blood-soaked landings at
Gallipoli, while Gracie marries another. A deception, born in a place and time on
the brink of war, traverses the world as successive generations seek freedom in
a century of change. It isn’t until American teen Noah Clifford joins his mother
Deborah, his grandfather Will and his great-grandmother Gracie in Australia that
the secrets of the past are revealed, secrets that will take them back to the beaches of Gallipoli…

From multi-award winning author, Richard Yaxley, comes a story of connectedness, family and the power of truth.

272 pages, Paperback

First published March 1, 2021

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About the author

Richard Yaxley

16 books11 followers
I write powerful and engaging stories for all age groups. My novels are:

- Harmony (Scholastic 2021)
- A New Kind of Everything (Scholastic 2020)
- The Happiness Quest (Scholastic 2018; CBCA Notable Book for Older Readers 2019)
- This Is My Song (Scholastic 2017; ACU Book Of The Year 2019; Winner of the 2018 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Young Adult Literature; Finalist in the 2017 Queensland Literary Awards; also published in the Czech Republic by Albatros Media)
- Joyous and Moonbeam (Scholastic 2013; Finalist in the 2014 West Australian Premier’s Awards for Young Adult Literature)
- Spring Rain (Self-published 2011)
- Drink the Air (Strictly Literary: Winner of the 2010 Queensland Premier’s Award for Young Adult Fiction)
- Bloodlines (Strictly Literary 2009)
- The Rose Leopard (University of Queensland Press 2003)
For further information on me and my work, go to http://richardwyaxley.com

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Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews
Profile Image for Madison.
1,065 reviews58 followers
April 29, 2021
Harmony is a unique novel than spans multiple generations. Rich with a variety of character voices and a writing style that makes you pay attention to every single line, Harmony is a novel that compels the reader as much as it disorientates.

I don’t usually read historical YA fiction. I’m even less likely to pick up a war novel. And while Harmony could easily be believed to fit easily in either of these genres, it is not so easily categorised. Harmony does begin with a tale of heroism and a young boy heading off to war. Our first in a line of characters is Tom Stott. Farm boy, brother, son. Also the sweetheart to Gracie O’Donnell. However, when Tom answers the call to arms he leaves behind a pregnant Gracie who must marry another man.

We read Tom’s chapters in the first section of this book. Upon his death at Gallipoli, the book jumps to Will, Gracie’s son. We spend a short time with Will as he leaves his home and searches for adventure and love across the world. Again, the book ends these few short chapters with Will and jumps to the next generation and we hear from both Will’s daughters. Another jump and another generation. The book continues in this way through the entire novel and we pass through multiple generations. In this way we experience the passing of time, the patterns that each generation repeats and reflect on how each decision impacts the lives of the next generation.

The writing style is quite rich and detailed, yet economical, using just a few words to convey very big events. It made me pay attention as a reader and I would find myself returning to sentences that seems innocent enough and yet their meaning was huge and carried big impacts for the characters. Every line and word is precious and so in this way Yaxley is able to fit a lot of story into this book. It’s not a quick book Tor was though, with limited dialogue and more reflection between narrator and reader.

Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog Madison's Library
Profile Image for Julie (Bookish.Intoxication).
767 reviews32 followers
March 9, 2021
Harmony is a compilation of tales of strong, brave characters who grew up in a time much different to ours, even if it wasn't all that long ago. Tales across decades, all linked by one brave boy, Tom Stott.

From Tom Stott to Noah Clifford, Harmony shows us glimpses of the past and how it affected our future. Shows us the strength of people, of growing up on the land and sacrificing for the betterment of the world.

I loved seeing each generation grow, the differences in beliefs, language and setting. How each generation still found magic in simplicity and in the Australian outback.

Deborah's story tugged at my heart, she was such an honest, innocent, trusting girl. Following her heart around the world, only to be shown her trust and faith would be taken advantage of by people who thrive on the adoration of others. Debbie's story, 'The It Girl' is haunting and such a powerful look into what it was like to be a girl in times when holding hands was risque.

Harmony became even more dear to me after reading the authors note, learning that it is inspired by a real person, named Tom Stott. But even more so, because the Stotts are from Tasmania, where I am from. This element gave me more of a connection to this book than I already felt as I watched the Clifford's grow up.

A well written and thought out book, one that shows generation after generation, all making similar decisions and all ending up back where it all started. Yaxley has a way of depicting places in such clarity, that makes it easy to picture them in your mind. Harmony is a whimsical, powerful read that, although takes you to distant shores, is utterly Australian.

Thank you to Scholastic Australia for sending me a review copy of this title. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Casey (through.thepages).
54 reviews8 followers
March 14, 2021
First I would like to thank @scholastic_au for sending me this wonderful Australian book to review. This multi generational story spans over multiple decades and follows the effects of one event that takes place between two lovers.
I found myself fully involved in the stories of these characters. There are a number of sections that feel like short stories as well as properly the character of Grace through the course of her life as each new POV that we meet is directly related to her. The writing was vivid and at time poetic in nature. I picked this book as Gallipoli was mentioned in the blurb but that was such a small part of this much karger story of love, family and truth.
I loved this book and would definitely recommend it.
35 reviews
June 15, 2022
Ended up so far from where we started, I almost felt lost by the end.
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews

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