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At the End of the Day

At the End of the Day

By Liz Byrskipaperback28 September 2021
$32.99
or 4 payments of $8.25 with Learn more
Booklovers earn $1.60 in rewards
When Mim Squires and Mathias Vander are stranded together on a disrupted flight home to Perth, they are surprised to find that they have much in common. Mim owns a bookshop, Mathias is a writer, and both are at turning points in their lives. Mim's childhood polio is taking a toll on her life. Mathias is contemplating a cross-continent move to be nearer his daughter.

But life back in Perth is not smooth sailing, with their respective family members going through their own upheavals. As Mim and Mathias both struggle to adjust to the challenges of being in their late seventies, secrets from the past that neither wishes to face rise to the surface, challenging their long-held beliefs in their independence and singularity.

At the end of the day, can they muster the wisdom and the courage they need to change?

PRODUCT DETAILS

  • Title: At the End of the Day
  • Author: Liz Byrski
  • Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
  • ISBN: 9781760781644
  • Length: 233.0 millimetre
  • Width: 154.0 millimetre
  • Format: PaperBack
  • Category: General Fiction
  • Publication Date: 28/09/2021
  • Pages: 336
  • Weight: 300.0 gram

RATINGS & REVIEW

20/09/2021 5:43:28 PM - Marianne
A heart-warming and uplifting read.
At The End Of The Day is the eleventh novel by Australian author, Liz Byrski. Former librarian Miriam Squires is returning home to Fremantle after visiting her sister in Oxford. Best-selling Melbourne author, Mathias Vander is rounding off his visit to his dying Belgian friend with a Perth stopover to see his daughter. Stuck for some hours in Doha, these usually reserved strangers strike up a conversation and discover an almost instant rapport. Back in Perth, Mim is dismayed by her diminished energy and enthusiasm for her successful second-hand book store, Life Support, and by the rebuffing of her offer of help to her much younger friend, Jodie, who recovering from a car accident. It’s a reality check on her ongoing physical disability, a legacy of polio that Mim contracted over sixty years earlier. Continued contact with Mathias brings her unexpected comfort. Fresh from the break-up of an unsatisfactory relationship, artist/illustrator Carla Vander is happy to have the company of her beloved Papa, and delighted when he again raises the idea of selling the family home in the Dandenongs and moving to Perth, to be closer to her (and Mim?). Except for the author persona he adopts for book publicity events, Mathias is usually rather reclusive, so she is pleased to see how much at ease he is when Mim is around. But both Mim and Mathias are burdened with relics from their pasts. When his oldest, closest friend in Belgium dies “the loss of the one person who knew his deepest secret and kept it all his life, has made him vulnerable. Without Luc’s support, he fears exposure and rejection more than he has ever done. He is haunted by dread.” Mathias wonders if the move to Western Australia “could be more than just a change of location; it could be the catalyst for a change within himself.” Meanwhile, Mim is overjoyed that her encouragement of younger sister, Alice to come to Australia has had a result. “For years she struggled to appear strong and competent; an example of how someone with a disability can overcome the hurdles if they really want to. But deep down she’s felt that polio had left her flawed and unlovable, and she had longed to be loved.” Could they finally broach the subject that had been avoided for so many decades? What a marvellous cast Byrski gives the reader: her talent for creating believable characters, appealing for all their faults and foibles, is undeniable. She sets them realistic challenges, and the reader cannot help but cheer them on and hope for their happiness. It is apparent on every page that Byrski’s research is thorough and this thought-provoking and moving tale includes both topical and classic themes: panic attacks, post-polio syndrome, fear of becoming irrelevant as we age, loneliness, and lack of self-worth. A heart-warming and uplifting read. This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by NetGalley and Pan Macmillan Australia
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