Birdbrain by Johanna Sinisalo

Birdbrain

Johanna Sinisalo

Inspired by (and quoting from) Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, this story takes us on a journey into the unknown in the company of a young Finnish couple. But this is more than a simple backpacker's trip. As sinister events unfolded I became conscious of another presence watching me, as I watched Jyrki and Heidi, making this an unsettling and at times unfathomable read.

Extract

Even though every part of my body is aching, I have to admit that Tasmania is in some unfathomable way both age-old and fresh as the day it was born. Old and experienced enough that it is knows how to touch a nerve but at the same time so young that it almost feels as though we are depriving a newborn creature of the peace it has just discovered and needs.
The bushes rustle and crackle - always to the left, always behind us, incessantly - as though Tasmania itself were following us, invisible, smart enough constantly to devise little pranks and childish enough to carry them out.

Parallels
  • Downward to the Earth by Robert Silverberg
  • The Beach by Alex Garland