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Atlantic Books for the Holidays

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Community Review

Almost unbearable at first, then unforgettable

The atmosphere of real and imagined menace (but, as it turns out, justifiably imagined), and the verging on gothic harshness of rural and aboriginal life during the Second World War makes parts of The Cure for Death by Lightning almost unbearable to read in the opening chapters. But then the spirit and resilience of 15-year-old Beth Weeks, and her eye for hopeful and redemptive signs in the people, the animals and the world around her win you over, and have you turning the pages with no fear, and much optimism that she will forge a life, thrive and be loved in the hardscrabble setting in which she chooses to remain. Populated with original and captivating characters and an undercurrent of mystery and mysticism that never veers into the utterly unbelievable, this is an unforgettable book.

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