The second book from new Australian author J.P. Pomare, In the Clearing, is loosely based on the real-life events of The Family. An Australian cult accused of imprisoning and brainwashing children throughout the 1970s and ‘80s.
The story follows the kidnapping of a young girl from two first person narratives. Protagonist one is the teenage Amy who lives an insular existence in the Clearing, obeying her Elders through strict routine, and takes it on herself to help the ‘new girl’ fit in with her new surroundings.
The second is Freya, an overbearing single mother also living a reclusive life with her son in rural Australia.
As their stories unfold, Pomare masterfully links them with clever misdirection’s that will keep you guessing right up until the final pages.