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  • Dani Vee

Book Review: Charlie Archbold

Mallee Boys, Charlie Archbold

This book made me cry about five times, including once in public. A beautiful yet simple story about two young adults and their father and how they navigate the loss of their mother in a small town. It's a book about masculinity and what it means to be a man in this world.

What I found so beautifully moving about the novel were the two boy’s perspectives Sandy and Red, and how these masculine voices circle around their grief. Although their mother is physically absent she is ever present in both the boy’s memories and how their lives have altered.

It’s a story about finding the courage to be vulnerable. Nature plays a significant motif in the novel, it dictates their lives but connects them. I love how Australian literature uses nature so beautifully to mirror and reflect its characters.