'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 27 April 2018

Review: Small Spaces

Sarah Epstein has created a brilliant and unforgettable mystery/psychological thriller. Its superbly designed storyline and characters will have readers glued to their seats, turning pages until the last word.

Years ago, six year old Mallory Fisher went missing from the carnival for seven days and returned physically and mentally scarred, never to speak again. She was taken instead of Tash by the shadow that Tash named Sparrow. 

No one believed what she told them she saw. Regardless of years of therapy, the permanence of panic attacks, and the disbelief of the people she trusted - especially her parents, Tash lives with the trauma of her memories.

Tash, now seventeen, is preparing to enter Year 12 and apply for a Uni degree. But the Fisher family’s return to town stirs up all the internal chaos and fears that Tash has covered for years. Aunty Ally has re-entered their lives and foggy images are disturbed from behind closed compartments in Tash’s mind, and all the things she was made to believe were her imagination, come back to life; even Sparrow. Is he real, or as others claim, a figment of her disturbed imagination?

This time, things will end differently.

A fascinating string of connected sub-stories build this outstanding novel filled with one twist after another. Disturbing themes question the way professionals approach their clients, and at times fail in their duty of care by following a template diagnosis; how easily children’s stories are brushed off as attention-seeking or acting out, and when trust is lost between parent and child, how relationships collapse within the alienating space that resentment creates.

Riveting reading, Small Spaces will be seen as one of the best reads of the year, and is not to be missed.

Discover more about the story behind this story in our revealing Q & A session with Sarah, here.  
Title: Small Spaces
Author: Sarah Epstein
Publisher: Walker Books
Publication Date: April 2018, $19.99
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781921977381
For ages: 14+
Type: Young Adult