Amanda Lohrey

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Anna Worley

Anna Worley is the main protagonist of the novel, and Luke Worley's wife. She lives with Luke in the city, where she begins to feel weak, despondent, and jealous of her wealthier friends. When Luke… read analysis of Anna Worley

Luke Worley

Luke Worley is the secondary protagonist of the novel, Anna Worley's husband, and Ken's son. When Luke sees his wife becoming physically weak and emotionally drained, he decides that the two of them should move… read analysis of Luke Worley

The Boy

The boy is a ghostly child, imagined or hallucinated by Luke and Anna throughout the novel. This character is more symbolic than literal, as he represents Anna's unborn child. After Anna's miscarriage prior to the… read analysis of The Boy


Ken Worley is Luke's father. Ken's cynical attitude puts him at odds with Luke, who wants to believe that moving to the country was the right decision. During Ken's visit to his son's new home… read analysis of Ken


Gilbert Reilly (usually called Gil) is an elderly widower and a neighbor of Luke and Anna. Gil quickly befriends Luke and Anna after they move to the small coastal town of Garra Nalla. He… read analysis of Gil
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Alan Watts is Bette's husband and the father of Zack and Briony. Alan and his family live in Garra Nalla and befriend Luke and Anna a few months after the couple moves into town… read analysis of Alan


Bette Watts is Alan's wife and the mother of Zack and Briony. She and her family live in Garra Nalla and become friends with Luke and Anna, welcoming them into the town's community… read analysis of Bette


Rodney Banfield is a plumber and one of Luke and Anna's neighbors in Garra Nalla. Rodney's presence in the couple's lives is minimal, but his childish conversation with Luke makes Anna feel like her husband… read analysis of Rodney
Minor Characters
Zack and Briony
Zack and Briony Watts are the energetic children of Alan and Bette. During the bushfire that threatens their home in Garra Nalla, the children follow their father down to the beach, where they're almost swept away by the tides.