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Bruny by Heather Rose

Book Review.

The Blurb

‘When a bomb goes off in remote Tasmania, Astrid Coleman agrees to return home to help her brother before an upcoming election. But this is no simple task. Her brother and sister are on either side of politics, the community is full of conspiracy theories, and her father is quoting Shakespeare. Only on Bruny does the world seem sane. Until Astrid discovers how far the government is willing to go.
Bruny is a searing, subversive, brilliant novel about family, love, loyalty and the new world order.’ 

I loved this book. Okay, I admit this story is not the genre I usually read. Politics is not my thing, but I love a good conspiracy.

I bought my copy at the Sydney Writers Festival this year and Heather Rose just happened to be signing her books piled up in the hub. I was lucky enough to have mine personalised. One of the many tips I’ve heard from other authors is to read widely. So, I read Bruny.

What I liked –

People descriptions as compared to actors. Although one character, whose name I’ve forgotten, is compared to a Koala, which made me laugh. So much easier to visualise the players. By the by, I have an actress in mind for Astrid’s mother – Joan Collins. Yes indeed.

Heather’s analogies are terrific. This is an example of such strong writing. “…a wild, exposed bit of sea that can be as benign as a lizard in the sun and then as fierce as a she-wolf protecting her cubs.’

Overall, I was amazed at the complexity of the information included. I’m in awe of the author’s seemingly vast knowledge of politics and the research about the subject expanded and fictionalised to create this excellent finished product. I loved the conspiracy story of secret goings-on between politicians and governments. Deals made, politicians suckered in, too scared to make waves. ‘All for the greater good.’ I liked that it made me scared. It frightens me to think, even though this is fiction, there is doubt that begs the question – But is it?

Bruny doesn’t read like a travel blog post; even so, Heather paints a picture of idyllic serenity. Her description of the island and the Café at Dennes Point have encouraged me to include Tassie on my list of places to visit. After Covid lockdowns, of course.

I love a good twist, and there are a couple. I loved the ending; it’s how I thought it should end.

I disliked –

The level of detail about the workings and the mindset of the Chinese and Australian governments. I mentioned earlier that politics is not my thing, and I found myself skimming over some of that information. But that’s just me. I like to get to the true gist of the story, the action bit.

Anyone who loves conspiracies, political goings-on and corruption will love this. Five Stars!

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