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  • Published: 23 April 2024
  • ISBN: 9781761348723
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $22.99

The Secrets of the Huon Wren




A deeply moving novel of love and loss set in the majestic mountains of Tasmania's Central Highlands, ideal for book clubs and fans of Kate Morton.

‘A mesmerising tale of love, heartache and healing . . . I laughed, I cried, I was totally swept away.’ SANDIE DOCKER

‘Two women. Two journeys. A tender, powerfully wrought telling of love and loss before the high mountains and rolling hills of Tasmania's rural north-west.’ ROBYN MUNDY

Launceston, 2019
Journalist Allira is writing a story for Folk magazine when she meets Nora, a nursing home resident with dementia and a doll cradled lovingly in her arms.

Caveside, 1953
Nora is a spirited teenage girl living beneath the Great Western Tiers in Tasmania’s heartland. When she is swept up in an illicit romance with a charming Polish–German migrant, it tears her family apart.

Stories intertwined
As the two women form an unlikely friendship, Allira becomes helplessly drawn into the old woman’s story. When Allira opens up to Nora about her own recent tragedy, the secrets embedded in the story of a carved wooden wren become the key to a life-changing discovery. This revelation from the past has the power to set them both free.

The Secrets of the Huon Wren is a lyrical and highly evocative story about two lives connected by a shared tragedy and a universal love.

‘I was so invested in the story that my life just seemed to fall away around me.’ GOOD READING

'This story is beautiful inside and out.' DAILY TELEGRAPH

  • Published: 23 April 2024
  • ISBN: 9781761348723
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Claire van Ryn

Claire van Ryn is an awarded writer who began her career as a newspaper journalist, but has also filled roles as magazine editor, communications specialist, writing teacher, blueberry picker and shoe fitter. She lives in Tasmania and extensive travels have only affirmed her love for Australia’s southernmost island state. She recently spent a year travelling Australia with her husband and two children in a caravan. Creating is Claire’s favourite thing: whether with words, watercolours or whatever else is close at hand.

Praise for The Secrets of the Huon Wren

A mesmerising tale of love, heartache and healing . . . I laughed, I cried, I was totally swept away.

Sandie Docker

Two women. Two journeys. A tender, powerfully wrought telling of love and loss before the high mountains and rolling hills of Tasmania's rural north-west.

Robyn Mundy

They say we shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but this story is beautiful inside and out. It follows the story of Tasmanian journalist, Allira, who meets dementia patient, Nora, at a Launceston nursing home one day, when she is there looking for an inspiring story to tell . . . Van Ryn cleverly melds together the story of a young Nora in the 1950s with Allira's modern day hunt for a truth long buried.

Mercedes Maguire, The Daily Telegraph

For a dedicated fiction reader such as myself, I would suggest that it's rare for a debut novel to be as dazzlingly accomplished as this one. The writing style, character evocation and storytelling reveal a natural-born novelist with a bright future.

Anne Lim, Eternity magazine

The writing is elevated and breathtaking in parts. The story is believable and never tips into being overly sentimental. It is grounded, beautiful and real, which helped me connect with all the characters instantly. I was so invested in the story that my life just seemed to fall away around me.

Nicola SKinstad, Good Reading

Such a poignant, tender read—I loved it!

Tess Woods

A tender and moving story told over two timelines and linking two fascinating women... Set between 2019 and the 1950s it tackles complex subjects with heart. A beautiful book and an absorbing read.

Sarah Jones, Fox Footy

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