Aussie Author Challenge Australian Women Writers Book Reviews

Book Review: The Memories we Hide by Jodi Gibson #AWW2019

book review the memories we hide

Laura Murphy left her hometown Bunyala a decade ago after the death of her childhood sweetheart, Ryan Taylor. She now returns to care for her dying mother. But returning means the past that she had put aside, the memories that she did not want to revisit, all begin to resurface. She tries to reconnect with her old friend Tom to get closure around Ryan’s death. But Tom has his own problems and a secret that could change everything. As Laura attempts to come to terms with her past, she might just realise that our memories are not always what they seem.

The Memories we Hide is Jodi Gibson’s debut novel. I have known Jodi online for many years and was extremely excited to follow her journey while self-publishing this novel. I found some parts of the story predictable such as the relationship between Laura and Tom but on the other hand, there were things I didn’t expect, particularly towards the end. Initially, I wasn’t a fan of Laura’s. She was obviously unhappy in her relationship with Luke but there were parts when it felt like she was allowing her circumstances to dictate her life rather than have any agency. But I warmed up to her as she grew as a character and began to show more depth. The only other thing that bothered me was the abrupt manner in which her relationship with Luke ended; it is apparent later that we come in the middle of what has probably been going on for a while but it felt more like a lover’s spat than a complete break-up. 

Gibson does a good job of helping Laura grow and gain agency and insight. Her descriptions of a rural town make you feel like you are there with the characters. The book is more than just about whether or not we can trust our memories. It also deals with difficult and prominent themes of mental health, grief and loss as well as the troubles faced in regional Australia due to lack of resources. As a debut novel, this is a good start for Gibson. 

My rating:

 

 

 

Where to find the book:

Amazon | Kindle | Author’s site | Booktopia

Where to find the author:

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

***Read and reviewed for the 2019 Aussie Author Challenge and the Australian Women Writer’s Challenge***

Disclosure: I was provided with an advance copy of the book but this has in no way influenced my review

Until next time,

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