The Town That Drowned
Genres Fiction & Literature
Living with a weird brother in a small town can be tough enough. Having a spectacular fall through the ice at a skating party and nearly drowning are grounds for embarrassment. But having a vision and narrating it to the assembled crowd solidifies your status as an outcast.
What Ruby Carson saw during that fateful day was her entire town – buildings and people – floating underwater. Then an orange-tipped surveyor stake turns up in a farmer’s field. Another is found in the cemetery. A man with surveying equipment is spotted eating lunch near Pokiok Falls. The residents of Haventon soon discover that a massive dam is being constructed and that most of their homes will be swallowed by the rising water. Suspicions mount, tempers flare, and secrets are revealed.
As the town prepares for its own demise, 14-year-old Ruby Carson sees it all from a front-row seat. Set in the 1960s, The Town That Drowned evokes the awkwardness of childhood, the thrill of first love, and the importance of having a place to call home. Deftly written in a deceptively unassuming style, Nason’s keen insights into human nature and the depth of human attachment to place make this novel ripple in an amber tension of light and shadow.
Winner of the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize
“Charming, wry, and believable … Nason has a particular gift for introducing supporting characters with memorable anecdotes, each of which reads like a sparkling little gem of a short story … Ruby’s voice, vibrating with contradictory desires, [delivers] shot-to-the-heart moments of real humour and pathos.” Quill & Quire