After forty-five years in Sydney, Cassandra Aberline returns to her home town in the Western Australian wheat belt in the same way she left: on the Indian Pacific train.
As they cross the emptiness of the vast Australian inland, Cassie travels back through her memories, too, frightened that she's about to lose them foreverand with them, her last chance to answer the question that has haunted her almost all her life.
`Platinum sounds expensive,' she said.
`But so worth it.' The travel agent was a master at judging people. `And you get so much for it.'
He said a figure that made Cassie laugh.
`I just want to travel on the train, not buy the bloody thing.'
But she handed over her credit card. After all, she reasoned on the walk home up the hill of Reservoir Street, somehow in three days and nights she must resolve the niggling doubt that has held her to ransom for some forty-odd yearsand how could she do that with a stranger opening the door, excusing herself, asking Cassie if she minded, generally just being there?
Platinum it had to be.
Glenda Guest grew up in the wheat belt of Western Australia and now lives in Merimbula, New South Wales. Her first novel, Siddon Rock, won the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book in 2010.
`Guest's descriptive prose is exquisiteA marvellous read from a talented author.' BookMooch
`With insight, intelligence and unexpected tenderness, Guest explores notions of trust and betrayal, identity and responsibility, and in particular, memory and what may be left if it is stripped away.' Adelaide Advertiser
`This gentle story is wrapped around a journey on the Indian Pacific train across the vast Australian continent.' Australian Women's Weekly
`A tender novel about how and why we forget.' New Zealand Herald
`With its Shakespearean plot dimensions, A Week in the Life of Cassandra Aberline exists on the plane of memories, where grief can enlarge small events and erase larger ones An engaging read.' Newtown Review of Books
`Guest's writing is poetic, littered with finely observed descriptions, and musings about the nature of memory and self.' Saturday Paper
`A gentle train ride across the Nullarbor and through the frailties of lifeGuest's cadence and visual imagery is superb, the novel oozing with tenderness.' Herald Sun
`Guest has given us a character able to ask many of the important questions about a life and its purpose. A thoughtful and challenging story.' Otago Daily Times
`A compelling novel...Contemplative and wise.' ANZ LitLovers
`Glenda Guest takes a plot worthy of Shakespearean romance and infuses it with vividness, melancholy and an acute sense of place whether she's writing about the remote outback or Sydney in the 70s.' Sydney Morning Herald
'This is a contemplative novel, loose, relaxed and spacious...The way we move in and out of experience feels close to life, punctuated with flashes of mystery and significance.' Australian
`An absorbing read.' Whispering Gums