Though technically a book for young adults, the debut offering from Byron Bay author Diana Sweeney is too beautiful to be missed by anyone. Set in a thoroughly Australian coastal setting and filled with characters that both delight and engage, The Minnow is Australian writing at its best. The strange sounding story (a young girl, who lost her family in a devastating flood, is navigating a pregnancy to a much older man and talking to fish along the way) and the themes explored (death, ageing and teenage pregnancy) do not sound as though The Minnow would make for easy reading. But Sweeney’s writing is so whimsically perfect that her book is an absolute pleasure to read. It’s the kind of book that you can’t wait to get back to, even though at the same time you’re absolutely desperate for it not to end. If this beautiful and powerful coming of age tale is Sweeney’s first effort, we can’t wait to see what comes next!
We HIGHLY recommend The Minnow by Diana Sweeney, winner of The Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing 2013, $20.
Suitable for 13+. Preview The Minnow here.