The novel is set in a difficult and yet exciting period of Sydney’s history. The post WWI depression has robbed the city of jobs and yet The Sydney Harbour Bridge rises from these ashes. Kelly deftly intertwines this history with a most-unlikely romance. Told through two separate voices, a fine balance is struck as the two claws of the harbour bridge, rivet to rivet, stitch to stitch, come closer together.
Kelly’s prose has a lovely surreal quality to it, possibly brought on by the use of present tense. The tone reminded me of Francis Ford Coppola’s highly under-rated film, One from the Heart, and the recent award clutcher, La-La-Land. And yet there’s something of a classic and straightforward logic to it. The novel’s concern and problematisation of the everyday echoed E M Forster.