My Father’s Shadow by Jannali Jones. (2019).
**3.5 out of 5 stars**
Kaya is woken up in the middle of the night and told by her mother they are to quickly pack and leave for their holiday home in the Blue Mountains; and her father is not coming back.
Kaya is recovering from PTSD after a traumatic event she can’t remember. She is seeing a psychologist in the hopes of recalling evidence to maybe assist in an upcoming trial. The mysteries just seem to be multiplying and she doesn’t know who to trust.
This is the author’s debut novel and it is quite well written; the manuscript won the State Library of Queensland 2015 black&write! Indigenous Writing Fellowship. I think the book is a great example of a young adult fiction for older teens in that it had a dark subject matter but no gruesome or horrific details. The ending was slightly abrupt for me but that is likely offset by the length of the book as it’s fairly short however an epilogue would have been good. I liked Kaya, she was a great lead. Her mum on the other hand I ended up quite disliking and she just seemed to be quite a selfish woman and not a very supportive mother. I think this was a great debut for the author and I’ll certainly keep an eye out for any future books.