Tall Bones, Anna Bailey

Tall Bones opening line: The roar of the bonfire is hard to distinguish from the sound of the trailer-park boys and the schoolgirls who holler and dance in the shadow of the Tall Bones.

Tall Bones

My blurb:

Abigail Blake is everything Emma is not. She is white, and accepted by the locals. And that is because her father is a staunch Christian who follows the Church. In a small town where race and religion are more important than anything else. Emma wants to fit in. But when her best friend disappears and the only other outsider has fingers pointed at him, she does not know what to think. Alcohol clouds her judgement and there is nothing her mother, the town’s Doctor, can do, to prevent what happens in the place she calls home.

Tall Bones
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.
Anything could happen in Whistling Ridge, this tinder box of small-town rage, and all it will take is just one spark – the truth of what really happened that night out at the Tall Bones….
My verdict:

At the same time as reading this book, we watched Mare of Eastown. And what struck me most is how small towns tend to have drug and alcohol problems. Well, at least the appear to in the world of novels and TV. Even though the reason why Abi went missing was hinted at during the unravelling of the novel, it is never quite confirmed. I found this a good read, even if the ending was tied up a little too quickly.

Publishing information:
ISBN 9780857527394
Format Trade Paperback
Published April 2021

Disclosure: I was sent the book to review by Penguin Random House South Africa. I was not required to write a positive review. This post is in line with my blogging policy.

Inspiration published on Lavender and Lime July 11:

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6 thoughts on “Tall Bones, Anna Bailey

  1. I think that drugs are a huge problem everywhere, especially in first world countries where they seem to be more acceptable in society. I believe drugs are still a bit of a no no here, but I may be old fashioned.

    1. You would be surprised I think. Drugs exist here, especially in private schools, where rich parents give their kids lots of pocket money.

  2. I’ve known many people who have had a drug problem, and it seems like it is a challenging one to conquer. I like the reference to Mare of Eastown, since that it set right in my backyard…

    1. I thought you would like the reference. And I am sorry to read you know many people who have been addicted. It is awful to watch!

  3. I don’t think I would like that book.

    I’ve just been reading about the violence and unrest in your country, and I hope your problems can be justly resolved. It sounds very disturbing.

    best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

    1. It is really bad in some places and my folks had to shut their business down. I hope too that it can be resolved, and quickly xx

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