If you're looking for a tidy little book, a book that ties up all its loose ends, fits all the puzzle pieces together, resolves every mysterious plot line... this is not the book for you. But who wants that anyway? Life isn't tidy, so this just feels more real.
All the Birds, Singing is crammed full of hidden pasts, unraveling lives, and mysterious strangers. A bleak and wind-whipped British island is home to Jake Whyte, a solitary woman who raises sheep and keeps the locals as far away as she can. She's hiding something, and now her sheep are being hunted and mutilated, and Jake might be next.
What makes this book impossible to put down is the unique structure Evie Wyld employs. In alternating chapters, between the the eerie present day mystery, she tells the story of Jake's secret past in the burning isolation of rural Australia. But these flashbacks run backwards in time, bringing the reader ever closer to the tragic secret that sets Jake's life spiraling out of her control.
This is a dark but beautiful book that I just couldn't stop reading. Even weeks after finishing it, it's lingering on my mind. Plus, I really love a book title with punctuation in it.— From Erin B.
This book is textured by the same kind of desperate, isolated atmosphere that you find in movies like "The Proposition" by Nick Cave or in paintings like "Christina's World" by Andrew Wyeth. Throughout all there runs a deep vein of understated, abject horror. In empathizing with the characters I found myself alternating between feeling unclean, and fearsome.— From Anje
From one of Granta's Best Young British Novelists, an emotionally powerful, award-winning novel about an outsider haunted by an inescapable past.
Jake Whyte has retreated to a remote farmhouse on a craggy British island, a place of ceaseless rains and battering winds, with only her collie and a flock of sheep as companions. But something--or someone--has begun picking off her sheep one by one. There are foxes in the woods, a strange man wandering the island, and rumors of a mysterious beast prowling at night. And there is Jake's relentless past--one she tried to escape thousands of miles away and years ago, concealed in stubborn silence and isolation and the scars that stripe her back. With exceptional artistry, All the Birds, Singing plumbs a life of fierce struggle and survival, sounding depths of unexpected beauty and hard-won redemption.