By Tim Winton
This is a beautiful study of abandonment and exile, and especially of how people can lose a sense of who they are. The Riders follows an Australian laborer who is renovating a small cottage in Ireland, waiting to be joined by his complicated wife and their child. When his traumatized daughter arrives alone, he takes her on a trip around Europe, where he believes his wife has fled. Winton writes with an Australian-y clarity and vernacular that's very familiar to me, but what I admire most is that he's so unashamedly interested in the human condition and the process of redemption.