Stillwater Creek by Alison Booth

Stillwater Creek is well written, and it is obvious that Alison Booth is familiar with the area where the action takes place - the south coast of NSW, Australia. Although the focus is on the two main characters, Ilona and Zidra - who are Latvian refugees - there are many other characters and sub-plots, which help to make the novel an enjoyable and interesting experience. A number of issues are presented via the different characters and the events in which they are involved. The author does not attempt to give solutions to problems such as the assimilation of refugees and aborigines or even the abuse of children - issues which, in the 1950s, were possibly not as much in the forefront as they are today - but gives the reader something to think about after he/she has finished the novel. An interesting read made all the more satisfying by the knowledge that it is followed by a sequel, Indigo Sky.
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