M.L. Stedman’s first novel was the subject of spirited bidding from several publishers when her agent put it up for auction in 2011. Stedman lives in London, where she has contributed to literary journals, but she is originally from Western Australia, where this book is set. Her three-part novel tells the story of Tom Sherbourne, a returned World War I digger who not only carries the guilt of survival but who is also estranged from his father and brother. They had expelled his beloved mother from the family home after she was caught in a dalliance inadvertently revealed by Tom.