One Would Think the Deep by Claire Zorn (UQP)
Following the death of his mother, seventeen-year-old Sam is thrown back into the heart of the family from which he and his mother have long been estranged. As he wrestles with his grief and sense of belonging, he is also forced to renegotiate his relationship with his cousins, aunt and grandmother. All the while, the secret that has driven a wedge between him and his family threatens to resurface, jeopardising his tenuous inner peace.
One Would Think the Deep has a potent emotional heart, great characters and beautiful writing. Built around gorgeous evocations of surfing and the sea, it is driven by wonderfully evoked characters and an empathetic exploration of masculinity. Sitting squarely at the older reader’s end of the young adult fiction spectrum, the narrative flows with effortless grace. In this impressive work, Zorn is unflinching in her approach to characters and setting, demonstrating an enviably assured level of craft in her writing.