– by Sophie James
When There’s Nowhere Else to Run is the latest compelling masterpiece by winner of the 2015 Australian/Vogel Literary Award, Murray Middleton, an Australian who is currently spending his life in Melbourne.
The book is a selection of stories about different types of people who have been brought up differently, but are all going through obstacles in their lives. They do what all other people do in hard times and try to run away from it, but of course it will catch up to you as they find out, there is nowhere else to run, but to run straight through it.
The story is about what society calls normal people and how no one has the ‘normal life’, the people in these stories are people that would be your neighbours. They are teachers, mums, sons, romantics, drunks, they work in hospitals and they are from all of Australia.
The story plots can be very sad, but it makes you feel more emotional because you know they can be real stories of the lives of Australians at this moment. Some have voiced their opinion and said that they could not even finish the book because it was too devastating for them but I admire an author that can get into your head and emotions through good writing.
Some of the stories include a person going through mental illness, friends caring for their dying friend, a black Saturday survivor and a hit and run driver dealing with the consequences of his actions and all with the graphic inputs of the Australian landscape.
What I enjoyed about this book is that it is not just one generation, and not just one point of view. These stories are from different generations, different ages, genders, personalities and all with different outcomes. It really is a book for everyone.
Photo credits: thingsmadefromletter, book-plate.com, www.allenandunwin.com