Callum Ferguson has grown up in the shadow of the sins of his father. The worst moment of his life came not at the age of sixteen, when he threw his father out of the house, but later in life, when he realised he was just like him. With a predilection for alcohol and violence, he sees his destiny every time he looks in the mirror.
Sass Hathaway, hell-raiser and successful musician, thrived in the limelight – until one night she lost it all. Drowning in an ocean of uncertainty, nursing a crippling case of self-loathing, her brother offers her a chance to find herself again.
His idea of salvation is a dilapidated bar. His proposal; she help him and his wife renovate and run it. However, when she and Callum cross paths, they both discover that salvation comes in many forms.
You can’t escape your past, you can only come to terms with it so that you can move on – but accepting your past is only the beginning. Then you must decide whether you’re strong enough to follow your heart.
(This can be read as a stand-alone, but reading ‘Absolution’ is recommended in order to get the most out of this story).
When Amanda Dick announced that she would be writing a standalone novel about Callum Ferguson, I must admit I was unsure as to which angle would suit best his story. In Absolution, Callum is this strong and supportive character whose presence is known and essential; however towards the end readers gain insight into the man behind the mask. In a captivatingly beautiful execution, Sliding Down The Sky is a multilayered exploration of love, loss, regret, pain and redemption.
Callum Ferguson feels heavy. Feeling unsatisfied with life, it seems that his monotonous surroundings are stifling his ability to break out of the mould that he has set for himself. Growing up in an abusive household and with an alcoholic father, Callum’s hangovers and frequently bruised knuckles have him convinced that he is following in his father’s footsteps. Empty and hollow Callum’s positivity about life is non-existent. And then he sees Sass.
Sass Hathaway is following her brother and his family and starting a new life. Heartbroken and full of sorrow, a life altering accident dramatically hinders her ability to see past her own sadness and despair. Dealing with an amputated hand, Sass feels disconnected from everything. Drowning and unable to see the light, she prays that this move will save her.
In a powerfully moving story Amanda Dick brings to life two beautifully damaged characters, which with their flaws and insecurities, equally enhance this story of survival and change. This story is told in dual points of view, allowing for both characters and their hardship to be equally represented. However, unlike many books told in alternating voices, Dick flawlessly and uniquely highlights Callum’s journey from selfish to selfless, through both points of view.
Through both smiles and tears Sliding Down the Sky is another success for Amanda Dick. Merging old characters with the new, she continues to excel in garnering empathy from the reader. Effortlessly magnifying the power and strength of love, in all it’s forms, Amanda Dick captures it’s ability to hurt, but even more so, it’s power to heal.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Amanda Dick is a night-owl, coffee addict, movie buff and music lover. She loves to do DIY (if it’s not bolted down, she’ll probably paint it, re-cover it or otherwise decorate it) and has tried almost every craft known to man/womankind. She has two sewing machines and an over-locker she can’t remember how to thread. She crochets (but can’t follow a pattern), knits (badly) and refrains from both as a public service.
She believes in love at first sight, in women’s intuition and in following your heart. She is rather partial to dark chocolate and believes in the power of a good vanilla latte.
What lights her fire is writing stories about real people in trying situations. Her passion is finding characters who are forced to test their boundaries. She is insanely curious about how we, as human beings, react when pushed to the edge. Most of all, she enjoys writing about human behaviour – love, loss, joy, grief, friendship and the complexity of relationships in general.
After living in Scotland for five years, she has now settled back home in New Zealand, where she lives with her husband and two children.
Her debut novel, “Absolution”, was released on 29 October 2013 (with the second edition releasing on 6 January 2015). Her second novel, “Between Before and After”, was released in May 2014. Her third novel, “Into the Void”, is scheduled to release in July 2015.