by Fiona Farrell
Review by Jo
The Deck is an intriguing hybrid of fiction and nonfiction with a uniquely Kiwi perspective that I couldn’t put down. Farrell brings together a gorgeously diverse group of old friends in their later years, who tell stories from pivotal moments in their lives. Riddled with relatable and compassionately rendered imperfections, they are a joy to spend time with as their stories within stories, within stories unfold. There are confessions, reckonings, rekindlings and new beginnings. Farrell’s work has everything you want – lyrical language, fresh wit, playful sensuality, suspense, and an uncanny ability to get to the nub of things. This brilliant new book is much more than a pandemic novel. Farrell tussles with ideas about how to live in a world approaching its final act, and questions the role fiction can play in such a time. Her conclusions are profound and hopeful, and make this a provocative but deeply satisfying read. This reflective novel is a delicious autumn read as we wind down into a slower, more thoughtful time of year.