Author(s): Charlotte Wood
'Who said Happiness is the light shining on the water? The water is cold and dark and deep.'Three adult siblings return home to the country town of their childhood when their father is critically injured in a fall. They each have their own reasons for dreading the homecoming, and bring with them the remnants and resentments of years before. Mandy has escaped a worthy marriage and a troubled past to live a traumatic and tenuous life reporting the hell of the world's war zones. Cathy can't get interested in anything much, and Stephen has been estranged from his father since an incident from his adolescence. Their father's impending death brings them together, but how will they forgive each other the transgressions of the past? In the hospital where their father lies in a coma, a young wardsman, Tony, has been waiting for Mandy to come home. Since they met by accident years before, he has obsessively watched her reports from Bosnia, Beirut and Fallujah, devouring her image on television and making plans for their life together. He knows her worst secret, but she doesn't even remember who he is.And when she does, it's too late to stop what's been set in motion Beautifully written, funny, moving and filled with shocks of recognition and revelation, The Childrenbuilds relentlessly to a climax of chilling and devastating force. This novel marks Charlotte Wood as one of our finest writers. First published 2007.