Nina Jameson is a Memorial Consultant living in London with her husband Daniel, when her marriage breaks down she accepts a job in her native town of Melbourne, where she resumes an old friendship with Sean whom she lived next to as a child. The author doesn’t dwell on the separation between Nina and Daniel, instead saying that we all know what grief is like and how it consumes and really leaving it up to the reader to fill in the blanks.
Sean has his own share of struggles, being estranged from his brother, the piano-playing genius Ramsey Blake, which weighs heavily on any interaction he and Nina have. Nina’s sister Zoe, who is married to Elliot who constantly belittles and ridicules her, to the point where Nina can’t stand to be around them as a couple. I found the relationship between Zoe and Elliot to be the most compelling, because as much as Elliot is awful to begin with, soon you start to see why.
The book drifts in and out of past and present that was slightly confusing during the first couple of chapters, but soon I got used to the rhythm of it and found it less so. The characters were very well written and very complex, each having their own share of good points as well as bad that makes reading about them all the more interesting. I was slightly disappointed with the ending, I like to know that when I finish reading a book and leave the characters that they are going to be ok left to their own devises, with the open-endedness of this I didn’t get that feeling. Of course, it’s a personal preference and for this book, it suited that kind of ending, but it just makes me slightly frustrated when not everything is resolved.