Night Swimming reviewed by Vivian

There’s a new girl in town and her name is Iris. This is a big deal for Kirby and Clancy since they are the only two seventeen-year-olds living in the small town of Alberton. Clancy is doing year 12 and has big ambitions to leave the town for Sydney to make his mark in the world. Kirby is the complete opposite. She’s learning to be a carpenter. She loves the town and can’t imagine leaving it or her beloved pets, including Stanley her pet goat. Besides she feels her mum needs her especially now that her grandfather has been diagnosed with dementia.

Iris is like a breath of fresh air. She’s beautiful and thoughtful but also quirky in an endearing way. Clancy has fallen head over heels for Iris and he’s determined to win her over. He plans to do this by starting an amateur youth theatre troupe – involving just the three of them. Kirby is also finding herself being attracted to Iris.

Is it possible for Iris to love one of them and for Kirby and Clancy to remain true to their friendship? This is a lovely book which manages to address many themes including mental illness, racism, friendship and love. It is a coming of age book about finding your place in the world, which many young adults will be able to relate to.

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