WINNER OF THE 2018 AUSTRALIAN INDIE AWARD
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2018 AUSTRALIAN LITERARY GOLD MEDAL
Justine Lee was born breech, entering the world on her knees. She reads words the wrong way round. But she sees things more clearly than the adults around her think.
Raised by her Pop since her parents left, Justine makes dens down by the narrow stretch of the Murray River they call the Choke, dodging the violent games of her half-brothers. Pop means well but has his demons, and Justine is left to eat little but eggs from the chooks, arriving at school with egg-stained clothes.
When Justine hears her dad’s coming home at Christmas, she feels a mixture of excitement and dread. He’s a dangerous man, and his presence will close in on Justine’s young life, like the riverbanks at the Choke. She must find a way to flow onwards, breaking the cycle of violence and poverty through friendship, resilience and her own strength.