The Faraway Truth

(1 customer review)


Zoe knows little about Marcus, her biological father. However, when she picks up a letter from him on her twelfth birthday, her curiosity is provoked. To Zoe, Marcus is the bad man, who lied, let her mother down and went to prison for murder. She has never known him. Yet, something in Marcus’s letter inspires Zoe to want to find out about him. Why does he call her Little Tomato, for example?

Thereafter, with the support of her grandmother, and then her estranged best friend, Zoe builds a background knowledge of Marcus through a written correspondence. It dominates her summer, where she’s supposed to be working toward entering a junior baking competition, a lifelong dream. What happens if they might speak, or even, meet?

Why has her mother refused to answer her questions? Thereafter, why does Marcus claim that there was an alibi for his whereabouts on the night of the murder, someone who was never even called as a witness! Can Zoe make a difference? It’s a long ago crime, and supposed to be committed by a father she’s never known. Furthermore Zoe is hiding her efforts about uncovering The Faraway Truth from her mother.

What a brilliant title! We recommend The Faraway Truth because it is gritty, real, meaningful and thoroughly satisfying. Zoe is such a realistic character, so brilliantly built, with resilience, grit, honesty and tenacity.

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The Faraway Truth

Janae Marks

(Chicken House)

The Faraway Truth comes rather too close for Zoe’s liking on her twelfth birthday. After a perfect day of cupcake baking she returns home to discover a letter from the father she’s never known. Marcus is in prison for murder and her mother has cut him out of Zoe’s life through necessity. Yet what if Zoe hears Marcus’s voice in the letter she hides from her mother? What if, thereafter, her mother, and estranged neighbour/ best friend, support the letter writing she continues over the summer. Furthermore, what if Zoe becomes convinced that Marcus was wrongly convicted? Though she may be twelve only, and supposed to be committed to a summer of playing and interning at the local cupcake bakery, Zoe is completely absorbed by Marcus’s history and discovering the truth. Yet what is it? Can she unpick the clues, the absences and the obscurity to reveal what really happened?
What a convincing novel! The Faraway Truth is reminiscent of such a real life issue and approach as Talking to the Moon. Although I felt some hesitation at the plot line, there is such strength in the storytelling, setting and characterisation that Janae Marks neither misleads nor preaches. Therefore this is a truly necessary, wonderful title, as perfect to the taste as Zoe’s cereal cupcakes!

1 review for The Faraway Truth

  1. Paula Hale

    An excellent story and extremely topical at the moment.

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