One of the best things about running Kendall Reviews is discovering new genres and authors. I’d seen the name. Andrew Cull, banded around by fellow bloggers for a while. I had already made the decision to read his work, so it was somewhat uncanny that a day or so later I received a message from Andrew asking if I’d like to read his latest novella. I’m not sure what sort of powers were at work here but how could I possibly refuse?
No messing about from me here, Hope And Walker is a fantastic novella with a delightful protagonist in 10-year-old Em. Em’s parent run a funeral parlour and takes comfort from talking to the recently deceased as they lie in their caskets. As she chats she draws their portraits to offer to the surviving relatives. The wonderful twist to this tale is that the dead have started to talk back to her.
‘We were both 10. But he was dead. And I sat drawing him.’
Billy Jenkins is 10 years old, and the victim of a terrible crime. It’s whilst Em sits drawing him late at night that he speaks to her, and so begins a wonderfully written, suspenseful tale set in Australia’s Northern Territory.
Written in a gorgeous clean punchy style, Hope And Walker is an absolute delight! Em is a character that I’d like to hear a lot more about in the future. Andrew Cull has to be congratulated for creating a reading experience that completely captivated me, more was said in Hope And Walker’s 34 pages than some books I’ve read that are 100 times as long.
I’m delighted to have discovered Andrew Cull.
And to the mysterious power that led to me holding the book in my hand?
I thank you!
Star Rating (out of 5): 4****
You can pick up a copy of Hope And Walker here
Andrew Cull’s author page can be found here