After a year apart, Maryanne returns to her husband, Roy, bringing their eight-year-old son Daniel and teenage daughter Freya with her. The family move from Sydney to Newcastle, where Roy has bought a derelict house on the coast.As Roy painstakingly patches the holes in the floorboards and plasters over cracks in the walls, Maryanne believes, for a while, that they can rebuild a life together.
But Freya doesn''t want a fresh start--she just wants out--and Daniel drifts around the sprawling, run-down house in a dream, infuriating his father, who soon forgets the promises he has made.
Some cracks can never be smoothed over, and tension grows between Roy and Maryanne until their uneasy peace is ruptured--with devastating consequences.
Michael Salawas born in the Netherlands in 1975 to a Greek father and a Dutch mother, and first came to Australia in the 1980s. He lives in Newcastle. His critically acclaimed debut, The Last Thread, won the 2013 NSW Premier''s Award for New Writing and was the regional winner (Pacific) of the 2013 Commonwealth Book Prize.
''In this remarkable novel, Michael Sala builds tension masterfully until an explosive final act...This is powerful and poetic fiction that showcases a writer at the height of his powers.'' Judges'' Report, Victorian Premier''s Literary Awards, 2018
''The standout novel for me was Michael Sala''s ferocious family drama The Restorer. In a year that made me think again and again about why men do terrible things, Sala''s emotional tour-de-force dares to confront some of those causes and the implications of violence at a social level.'' Gretchen Shirm, Australian, Books of the Year 2017
''There is so much to praise about this book. Michael Sala''s prose is clear and unadorned, the setting exquisitely rendered, but it is the characters - Freya, Maryanne, Roy and Daniel - all of them flawed and complex and deeply, deeply human, who will stay with me for a very long time. I would defy anyone to read their story and remain unmoved. The Restoreris anincredibly powerful novel and, I believe, an important one.'' Hannah Kent
''Michael Sala is a sensitive, perceptive observer of human relationships and I have long admired his work. The Restoreris a beautifully written novel about growing up, starting again--and how the riptide of personal history can pull us further and further from safety, no matter how hard we fight.'' Charlotte Wood
''A wise and timely novel that builds and breaks like a summer storm--just as beautiful, just as brutal.'' Fiona McFarlane
''Sala''s story of mundane domestic tension explodes in ways both already anticipated and powerfully surprising. The narrative is real, compelling, sophisticated and deeply human. Having read this work, I will certainly seek out Sala''s debut novel, and watch with interest for new works from this gifted creator. Strongly recommended.'' 4ZZZ
''This is powerful, poetic, extraordinary fiction...Sala never falters.'' Australian
''Unputdownable...Sala creates an atmosphere of simmering tension with an undercurrent of unpredictability that seeps into every exchange. [He] is a brilliant writer.'' Saturday Paper
''Closely observed, with the visceral force of truth, Michael Sala''s heartbreaking novel captures the tender hope of love and its terrible cost.'' Kathryn Heyman
''Recommended for readers of literary fiction who appreciate exploring the darker realities of Australian life now and in our not-so-distant past.'' Books + Publishing
''Sala''s account is sophisticated and shows the immense complexity of relationships.'' Good Reading
''Sala''s second novel is assured and polished and adds potency to the outcry against domestic violence.'' Herald Sun
''Michael Sala''s beautifully shaped second novel glows with all the complicated pain and joy of being human...A tremendous depth of insight and compassion on the part of the writer informs the three main characters...The reader knows pain is coming but the power and deep humanity of Sala''s writing defies the instinct to look away.'' SA Weekend
''Domestic violence is an everyday reality for tens of thousands of women in Australia. Recent horrors and public campaigns have raised awareness of this social scourge. Journalists have written extensively on the subject, yet it is novelists, as Michael Sala shows in The Restorer, that can gives us a more acute view of the emotional complexities that bind couples and keep women in threatening domestic situations.'' Australian Book Review
''A slow burning work of fiction that moves with troubling intensity and sensitivity to give an insider''s account of a violent marriage.'' Sydney Morning Herald
''Michael Sala has a rare gift: in prose that takes your breath away, he tells a story of heart-rending sorrow without a trace of sentimentality.'' Raimond Gaita on The Last Thread
''The Restorer is a beautifully written and very powerful fiction that not only shines a light on the deep roots of domestic violence but also plays with the line of what remains in the face of such destruction. Sala''s story will stay with the reader long after the book is finished.'' Compulsive Reader
''This is a sensitively rendered novel with a fine eye for emotional and physical detail. The questions it raises are as disturbing as they are compelling.'' Sydney Morning Herald
''Now, I''m not self-promoting here, but I will be on stage [at Sydney Writers Festival] with Newcastle writer Michael Sala. Indeed, the only person I''m promoting is Sala, as his unsettling family novel The Restoreris superb.'' Stephen Romei, Australian
''His style is spare and direct, as if parading its lack of trickiness and fanfare; but underneath it swells a great, unwieldy tide of emotion.'' Overland
''The Restoreris a powerful, emotionally charged and thought provoking book.'' Pile by the Bed
''Michael Sala taps into the tension and fear of the times to help build the mood...The cracks are widening long before the earth moves in this novel of a family locked into patterns of violence.'' Australian Women''s Weekly
''The Restoreris a powerful, emotionally charged and thought provoking book. Yet again shining a light on a pervasive strain in Australian society, Sala effectively builds the tension based on a certain fatalistic inevitability. The storm was always coming and it was always going to break.'' PS News
''A scrupulously written, scarifying story of impending tragedy, which is to give nothing away...A picture of domestic tension, violence and disintegration.'' Sydney Morning Herald, Books for Your Holiday Reading
* Major print interview * National radio interviews on RN Books & Arts Daily and with Radio NZ's Kim Hill * Local ABC Radio interview in Newcastle * Launch at the Newcastle Writers Festival * Wide Review coverage in broadsheet newspapers and literary journals * Online review coverage on sites such as the Guardian, ANZ LitLovers and BookMooch * Author will be a guest at Writers' Festivals * Dedicated influential reader mailout * Feature advertising in the Monthly * Shared advertising in ABR and the Big Issue * Giveaways and promotions with online booklover communities like Goodreads, Good Reading and Better Reading * Budget for bookseller catalogues * Feature title in Text newsletters, website and social media campaigns * Bookclub notes available on publication
'A wise and timely novel that builds and breaks like a summer storm-just as beautiful, just as brutal.' Fiona McFarlane 'Michael Sala has a rare gift: in prose that takes your breath away, he tells a story of heart-rending sorrow without a trace of sentimentality.' Raimond Gaita on The Last Thread 'A confronting and compelling story of a family. Sala captures perfectly the puzzled silence of the uncomprehending child in a narrative swollen with unspoken secrets.' Debra Adelaide on The Last Thread
Michael Sala was born in the Netherlands in 1975 to a Greek father and a Dutch mother, and first came to Australia in the 1980s. He lives in Newcastle. His critically acclaimed debut, The Last Thread, won the 2013 NSW Premier's Award for New Writing and was the regional winner (Pacific) of the 2013 Commonwealth Book Prize.