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

Wednesday 21 February 2024

Review: Silver Linings

Five-year-old Nettie longs for a mother with whom to share cuddles and conversation. She is tortured by the fact that I arrived. My mother died.

The voice of Nettie as narrator is innocent, simple and realistic, while her inner observations successfully draw the intended response from the reader.

The strict and heartless Aunt Edith has been living with the family on the farm, begrudgingly caring for them for some time. Her Hher

Dissatisfying answers from Edith to young Nettie’s questions about life, simply give birth to further queries, especially the explanation that storks deliver babies to families.

This issue is also a pivotal point in this well-crafted storyline.

When Nettie’s dad arrives with his new wife Alice, love and kindness arrive with her. Nellie and her sisters’ longings are fulfilled. Their family life is enveloped in warmth and togetherness.

Into the many changes and joys the family now experiences due to Mum Alice, tragedy silently creeps to steal the renewal and calm that came with her presence.

Can the family find a way out of their darkness and grief? Will a simple unconscious action of Nettie’s be the instrument that saves them?

Nannestad’s unique approach to the many moving themes in this book, presents an internal and external view which highlights family life, its crises and compassion, and that regardless of what life serves up, there are always silver linings.

Set in the early 1950’s, the prose is filled with humour, cleverly creating sharp images that roll like a film through the reader’s mind.

Title: Silver Linings
Author: Katrina Nannestad
Publisher: Harper Collins, $19.99
Publication Date: 1 November 2023
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780733342257
For ages: 11+
Type: Middle Grade Fiction