Sofie Laguna has to be my favourite Australian author. I absolutely love her style of writing and the emotional subjects she broaches in her books.
Infinite Splendours once again deals with childhood trauma, this time from the perspective of a boy called Lawrence living in the Grampians in Victoria. The boy’s life is turned upside down when his uncle visits him, his mother and brother. His mother is thrilled to have some adult company, but his little brother is not sure about this new guest.
The next part of the story tells of the impact of the trauma Lawrence suffers as he grows up, and he turns inwards to protect himself and his family.
Laguna is extraordinary in her ability to see the world through a child’s eyes and reflect that innocence, and often confusion, in her characters. It is a shockingly portrayal of the way an event can have an ongoing impact on a child, and later, an adult.
Despite the challenges he faced, Lawrence’s character is appealing, turning to art and the beauty of nature to cope. It is hard to read about his difficulty communicating with his beloved brother as he becomes an adult, despite his desperate need for love.
It was also interesting to read a book set near my home town. I am familiar with the beautiful, hulking Grampians and the setting plays a significant role in the story.
Infinite Splendours is a beautiful, haunting read and I can’t wait to see what Laguna comes up with next. I just hope the wait isn’t too long.