I've seen this book popping up all across social media with high praise, and was fortunate to read it recently.
I didn't know what the story was about, but those that had read it were using words like "tragic" and "heart-breaking" to describe it.
After finishing it within a couple of days, it is evident why those descriptions were used.
This was a very emotional, tender and devastating novel, written beautifully.
The story begins with a woman named Ava and her two sons, 9 year-old Max, and 4 year-old Teddy, driving to a new residence in the fictional coastal town of Sheerwater.
Ava is hoping to put the past behind her, which includes her abusive husband Lawrence, but she is nervous that she hasn't made the correct choice.
Nevertheless, she is determined to make a fresh start for herself and the boys.
About half an hour away from their destination, they witness a tragic accident involving a light plane crashing into vacant grassland near the side of the road.
Ava makes the snap decision to get out of the car and assist, leaving her sons in the car.
Once paramedics and other passersby arrive to the scene, Ava heads back to the vehicle but makes the shocking discovery that her boys have gone missing and nowhere to be seen.
Who has taken the boys? Or did they wonder off on their own?
The story unfolds over three days and I felt that the beginning and ending were the best parts, although having said that, I would've liked to have an ending with more closure. An epilogue would've been helpful to provide that resolution.
Sheer Water is told in alternating chapters from Ava's, Lawrence's, and Max's perspectives, and I thoroughly enjoyed the narrative of Max.
In fact, if the entire book was from his perspective, I would've given this 5 stars.
As mentioned, this is a highly emotional novel with an element of mystery, and one that will leave you thinking even after you have finished reading it.
Sheer Water is available now through Harper Collins Australia, RRP $32.99