“For one last time horse and rider were becoming part of air not earth.”

— Gillian Mears, Foal’s Bread

“The hills only come back the same: I don’t mind, and all the flat moorland and the sky. I don’t mind they say, and the water says it too, those black falls that are rimmed with peat, and the mountains in the distance to the west say it, and to the north …”

— Kirsty Gunn, The Big Music

“Nothing ended, nothing begun, nothing resolved.”

— Annie Proulx, Brokeback Mountain

“Deborah Wardle writes heartfelt stories with clarity and compassion.”

Why We Cry – Excerpt from novel in progress. Chapter One:

More water moves underground than across the surface in these parts. Frankie Pankhurst squinted through the windscreen into summer light. She sped over the straight, flat roads towards Lennie, her father, who was holed up in his hut by the Murray River. The nurse had said he didn’t have long, but she didn’t know Lennie’s wiry core. Frankie wound down the window, let in an oven blast of smells of dry grass and hard-baked soil. Her hair whisked around her buttress-like neck. She tugged her locks forward. The drive gave her time to think.