Dylan and her adored French mother dream of one day sailing across the ocean to France. Paris, Dylan imagines, is a place where her black skin won’t make her stand out, a place where she might feel she belongs.
But when she loses her mother in a freak accident, Dylan finds herself on a very different journey: a road trip across outback Australia in the care of her mother’s grieving boyfriend, Pat. As they travel through remote towns further and further from the water that Dylan longs for, she and Pat form an unlikely bond. One that will be broken when he leaves her with the family she has never known.
Metal Fish, Falling Snow is a warm, funny and highly original portrait of a young girl’s search for identity and her struggle to deal with grief. Through families lost and found, this own-voices story celebrates the resilience of the human heart and our need to know who we truly are.
Cath Moore is a freelance writer, award winning filmmaker and educator of Afro Caribbean and Anglo Irish heritage. She has written for The Age, Huffington Post Australia and SBS Life and has also worked as a story developer for screen content. Cath is a published academic with a PhD in Danish screenwriting practices. She was a contributor to the anthology Growing Up African in Australia and is currently working on her second novel. Cath teaches creative writing at The University of Melbourne.
Told in the captivating voice of fourteen-year-old Dylan, Metal Fish, Falling Snow is an outstanding young adult novel about family, grief and identity. While tackling many serious issues – Dylan is dealing with the death of her beloved mother and struggling to accept her Guyanese heritage – the novel is also full of spark and humour, and each page is imbued with striking and unforgettable imagery.
In Dylan, Cath Moore has created a spectacular protagonist who, for all her vulnerability and pain, is a force to be reckoned with. While Dylan’s perspective of the world may cause her to be misunderstood by those around her, she is an irrepressibly wonderful companion for readers. Her ability to see into other people’s memories – a motif that is seamlessly woven into the action of the narrative – allows Moore to shine light on the unspoken sadness of ordinary lives.
This is a novel for both young and old; a brilliant and heartfelt work of Australian fiction.
‘A brilliant debut…Metal Fish, Falling Snow carries the pain of loss, the nuances of race and the longing for family, and interprets the world anew with immense literary skill and just a little bit of magic.’ The Saturday Paper
‘[A] beautiful and tender novel exploring themes of familial legacies, finding a place to belong, grief, and what it means to be an Australian of mixed heritage.’ Sam van Zweden, Kill Your Darlings
‘A remarkable creation…Metal Fish, Falling Snow is a young adult novel…but given the timeliness of its themes and the beauty of its prose, it would be a shame for adult readers to miss out.’ Gemma Nisbet, The West Australian