Book Tour review and Q&A: Elegy by Jane Abbott

Author: Jane Abbott
Publisher: Random House Australia
Pages: 363 pages
R.R.P: $19.99
In a small Australian town, the most epic love story in history is unfolding... Again.

Everybody knows everyone in Kincasey, and nothing ever happens. That's what Jenny thinks when she moves there- until she meets the mysterious Michael Webster.

But when Michael gets into a fight with the town bully, long-held resentments simmer to the surface, loyalties are tested, and Jenny finds herself the centre of attention. Her situation isn't helped by a deepening friendship with Michael's stepbrother, Gabe, or her jealousy of Gabe's beautiful but aloof sister, Caitlin.

Caitlin is the only one who knows the terrible truth: this isn't the first life she and Michael have lived. They have a destiny to fulfil- and it's time for Michael's powers to awaken. But what use is power if it can't give you what you most desire?

My review
Thoughts on the book: OMG where to start this review. Maybe I might do this review a bit different and start with the ending. I had a love/hate relationship with the ending. I felt like there was this huge big build up and I was on the edge of my seat and then all of a sudden I'm not where I thought I would be and I've been thrown forward without the details that I'm actually wanting, that said I had to hold back the tears when the ending came.  Everything was wrapped up so nearly and it was a very fitting end.

It's hard to write this review without giving too much away. There are two amazing love stories that are told; one spanning years and years and another so new yet just as beautiful and strong. It will leave you with a warm loving feeling and will have you think g about your first love and all the memories or snippets that point to past loves. The author also references big and small characters in stories past and how each one has a part to play in the story. Maybe that's why she wrote the story from the perspective of Jenny, Gabe, Michael, Caitlin and Caset. Some of these characters feature often and some not as much but each plays a massive role in the tale of Elegy.

Like in the book, I myself grew up in a small rural town like the characters in the Elegy and I could really  relate to how things are and the characters. It's hard growing up in a small town where everyone knows everyone else's business and your always under the watchful eyes of everyone else. Just like me I think most people will be able to identify with some part of the story.

Rating: 4/5

Q&A with Jane Abbott

Congratulations on the release of Elegy. It is an amazing book. How would you describe Elegy to perspective readers?


Thank you. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Elegy is magical realism – a touch of fantasy and mythology woven into a very contemporary story. It’s a story about love and lust, mateship and family, courage and sacrifice, where the arrival of new girl, Jenny, sets off a series of events too big for the small town setting. In turns funny and sad, I hope it will satisfy readers.



All of the characters are really likeable and most people would easily be able to identify with what is going on in their lives or the character themselves. Do you have a favourite and if so which one and why?


I adore Gabe. Who wouldn’t? He’s the archetypal male hero (deliberately so). Dependable, good looking, and possessing a physical as well as an inner strength that is unmatched. He embodies the mythical Heracles, and his loyalty and love for friends and family are innate. He was so much fun to write and, though it wasn’t my original intention, Elegy became his story as much as it didMichael’s and Cait’s.



I grew up loving retellings of Greek mythology. Elegy's plot is full of Greek Mythology. Have you always loved Greek Mythology and do you have a favourite myth?


Yes, I too grew up on a diet of mythology. Greek, Roman, Persian, Norse and Egyptian. I couldn’t get enough of it. I stuck to mainly Greek myths in Elegy, with a few throw-ins (Egyptian and Persian) and of course the legend of Lancelot and Guinevere. It’s a bit of a mix, but it was important to get the right mix, and not make it too confusing. I hope I’ve managed to do that. My favourite is, of course, the story of Prometheus, because of his selfless act to bring fire to mankind, but really all the myths that are featured in the book are favourites of mine. Which is probably why they’re there!



I grew up in a small farming community like Kincasey where everyone knew everyone else's business even sometimes before they did. Why did you chose a small community setting rather than a city?


Elegy is such a big story, with a lot of big themes, so it seemed right to set it in small town where everything could be magnified. Some of the biggest stories occur in the most insignificant places. Plus, I have a small property in country Victoria, and I wanted to use the opportunity to describe the landscape I love so much.



Your writing is fantastic. Are there any plans for more books being written in the future by you?


Thank you! That’s a lovely compliment. Elegy was the first novel I wrote, but mysecond, Watershed, was actually published in July this year. It’s a very different read, and definitely not YA. I’m taking a bit of a break at the moment – it’s been a very busy time for me – but when I get back into it I’ll be working on the sequel to Watershed. I would love to write another YA book, and hope to do so when commitments and deadlines permit.



Last question. What is your favourite book and why?


I have so many favourites, it’s impossible to choose just one. And, every year, the list just grows. I love The Road, by McCarthy, because the writing is so beautiful. I adore The Ballad of Lee Cotton, by Christopher Wilson, because it’s brilliant and quirky. And I’ve read just about everything written by Ursula Le Guin, because she is, quite simply, one of the greatest storytellers of our time.