Saturday 2 May 2020

#BlogTour Ash Mountain by Helen Fitzgerald

It's an absolute pleasure to take part in the BlogTour Ash Mountain by Helen Fitzgerald. It's an incredible read.
About the Author
Helen FitzGerald is the bestselling author of ten adult and young adult thrillers, including The Donor (2011) and The Cry (2013), which was longlisted for the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year, and is now a major drama for BBC1. Her 2019 dark comedy thriller Worst Case Scenario was a Book of the Year in both The Guardian and Daily Telegraph. Helen worked as a criminal justice social worker for over fifteen years. She grew up in Victoria, Australia, and now lives in Glasgow with her husband.

Follow @FitzHelen on Twitter, on Goodreadson Amazon, Visit helenfitzgerald.netBuy Ash Mountain

About the book
Fran hates her hometown, and she thought she’d escaped. But her father is ill, and needs care. Her relationship is over, and she hates her dead-end job in the city, anyway. She returns home to nurse her dying father, her distant teenage daughter in tow for the weekends. There, in the sleepy town of Ash Mountain, childhood memories prick at her fragile self-esteem, she falls in love for the first time, and
her demanding dad tests her patience, all in the unbearable heat of an Australian summer.

As past friendships and rivalries are renewed, and new ones forged, Fran’s tumultuous home life is the least of her worries, when old crimes rear their heads and a devastating bushfire ravages the town and all of its inhabitants…

Fitzgerald is not only a superb writer and storyteller - she is a versatile one. You can often recognise certain trademark styles when an author writes in multiple genres, but with Fitzgerald it's almost as if she immerses herself so completely into the process that she becomes the writer the story needs, as opposed to the writer completing the story. The effect is Kafkaesque in its metamorphosis. Quite spectacular really, as indeed this story is.

I'd like to say the story is centred around Fran, however she is merely the driver taking the reader from one moment in her life to another. The main character is Ash Mountain, a place which certainly takes on a life of its own in this story. Kodak moments of then and now, before and after.

Fran returns to Ash Mountain to care for her father, albeit reluctantly, despite the fact she loves him dearly. Her life has been a series of choices leading her towards what will hopefully one day be an acceptance of self. Am I being vague? Good - this story should be enjoyed with a tabula rasa as starting point.

It's hard to relegate this book to a specific genre, perhaps because it fits into multiple ones and doesn't need or want to be defined by one. I am certain Fran would agree with me, as she herself is also quite weary of being forced into boxes, categories and descriptions by others.

It's a thriller filtered through memories, both forgotten and vividly remembered, and compounded by a harsh and unforgiving environment. At the same time it is also a story of coming-of-age, accountability and the realisation that the world and mother nature stops for no man, woman or child.

It's an incredibly powerful story, which is driven by breathtakingly accurate and often devastatingly  painful descriptions of both life and death. Fitzgerald is a master of her trade and a pleasure to read.

Buy Ash Mountain at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Orenda Books; Publication date 14 May 2020 | Paperback Original | £8.99. Buy at Amazon com. Buy at

Read my review of Worst Case Scenario by Helen Fitzgerald.

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