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A powerful and evocative literary thriller from a stunning new Australian voice, for fans of Donna Tartt and Alice Sebold.

Gwendolyn and Estella have always been as close as sisters can be. Growing up in a wealthy, powerful and sometimes treacherous family, they’ve relied on each other for support and confidence. Now, though, Gwendolyn is lying in a coma, the sole survivor of Estella’s poisoning of their whole family. What in their dark and complicated past has brought them to this point?

As Gwendolyn struggles to regain consciousness, she desperately retraces her memories, trying to uncover the moment that led to this brutal act. Their aunt’s supposed death at sea; Estella’s unhappy marriage to the brutish Leonard; the shifting loyalties and unspoken resentments at the heart of the opulent world they inhabit – one by one, the facts float up, forcing Gwendolyn to confront the truth about who she and her sister really are, and the secrets in their family’s past.

Travelling from the luxurious world of the rich and powerful in Jakarta to the most spectacular shows at Paris Fashion Week, from the coasts of California to the melting pot of Melbourne’s university scene, Under Your Wings is a powerful, evocative and deeply compelling novel about the secrets that can build a family empire - and then ultimately bring it crashing down.

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9780143789017

    July 2, 2018

    Viking

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781760144081

    July 2, 2018

    Penguin eBooks

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo

Extract

When your sister murders three hundred people, you can’t help but wonder why – especially if you were one of the intended victims. Though I do forgive her, if you can believe it. I tried my best to deny the strength of family ties when everyone was still alive, but now I realise the truth of the cliché: blood does run thick. Even if poison trumps all.

It was caught on surveillance tape, so there’s no denying that Estella was the culprit. I haven’t seen the footage myself – can’t see at all in my present condition – but I can imagine it with great clarity. At the mouth of the corridor leading from the hotel ballroom to the adjoining kitchen, my sister appears. The angle of the camera makes it difficult to see her face, obscured by the enormous hairsprayed chignon atop her head, but I’d recognise those calves anywhere – peasant’s legs, our mother always jokingly called them, disproportionately bulky for Estella’s otherwise slender frame. Graceful in stilettoes, despite her country-bumpkin appendages, she glides out of one camera’s purview into another’s. My mind’s eye sees her in the kitchen now, speaking to one of the staff, who grants her immediate entry upon learning that she’s Irwan Sulinado’s granddaughter. Graciously, she offers a pretext (a mission to reassure a germ-phobic aunt, perhaps – any excuse would have served since, in Indonesia, the wealthy don’t need reasons). They allow her free passage, ‘Silakan, Ibu’ – ma’am, as you please – and let her sail on, past flaming woks and stainless-steel bins of pre-sliced meats and vegetables, fielding deferential nods from surprised and frazzled cooks. Only when they resume their duties does she strike, pulling a tiny vial from inside the high, stiff collar of her silk cheongsam and scattering its contents into the great steaming tureen of shark’s fin soup with a flick of a jade-bangled wrist.

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