Title: Forgotten Places
Author: Johanna Craven
Narrator: Rebecca McKernan
Van Diemen’s Land, Australia, 1833
English settler Grace Ashwell flees an abusive lover in Hobart Town, with six-year-old Violet in tow. In her head, escape is easy: find work in the northern settlements and earn enough for passage home to London. But the terrain beyond the settled districts is wilder than Grace could ever have imagined. She and Violet find themselves lost in a beautiful but deadly land where rain thunders down mountains, the earth drops away without warning and night brings impenetrable darkness.
Deep in the wilderness, they find a crude hut inhabited by Alexander Dalton, an escaped convict long presumed dead. Hiding from civilization in an attempt to forget his horrifying past, Alexander struggles to let Grace into his world.
When Violet disappears, Grace’s fragile trust in Alexander is put to the test. And while she searches for answers, he will do anything to keep his secrets inside.
Based around the true story of the Macquarie Harbor bolters; one of the most horrifying events from Colonial Australia’s bloody history.
This story is based on true events that happened in Australia in the 1800’s. Focused around two very broken people, this story has a lot of time jumps and flashbacks so the beginning is a bit confusing, however, the story really picks up around after about an hour. When we are introduced to Grace, who has fled into the wilderness with her child in the hopes of escaping an abusive husband, the story takes a new angle. Finding shelter with a man who has secluded himself from society for 11 years, the two begin to depend on one another in order to find faith in humanity once again. Their lives are more entangled than either is willing to believe. When Grace’s daughter disappears, they must face the truth.
With beautiful worldbuilding, deep characters, and suspense, this is a very engaging audiobook that’ll hold you until the end. A story of love, loss, and tragedy, this is one that will stick with you long after you’ve finished reading.
The narration is spot on.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.