When seventeen-year-old Emma leaves her best friend Abi at a party in the woods, she believes, like most girls her age, that their lives are just beginning. Many things will happen that night, but Emma will never see her friend again.
Abi’s disappearance cracks open the façade of the small town of Whistling Ridge, its intimate history of long-held grudges and resentment. Even within Abi’s family, there are questions to be asked – of Noah, the older brother whom Abi betrayed, of Jude, the shining younger sibling who hides his battle scars, of Dolly, her mother and Samuel, her father – both in thrall to the fire and brimstone preacher who holds the entire town in his grasp. Then there is Rat, the outsider, whose presence in the town both unsettles and excites those around him.
Tall Bones was an immediately absorbing and beautifully written psychological drama, Anna Bailey creates a group dynamic of intriguing, multi layered characters within an atmospheric small town setting, where a girl goes missing and everyone’s secrets and prejudices start to bubble to the surface.
I found it entirely enthralling, the haunting undertone really has an impact. This is not your standard whodunnit or what happened, although of course all that gets answered, but is more an insightful and intelligent snapshot of life in one place, where an eclectic and close knit community holds its secrets close.
The people you meet within the pages are all so relatable, even the most hateful, their personalities and interactions are completely addictive, you won’t want to put it down until the final emotionally tense finale.
Really excellent. Highly recommended. Pop it on your must reads of 2021.