Clancy of the Undertow

26802671Author: Christopher Curry

Publisher: Text Publishing Company

Publication Date: 13 December 2016

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Diversity: LGBT Characters (lesbian)

TW: Character Death, (internalized) homophobia, homophobic slurs, suicide attempt

Summary: We’re sitting there with matching milkshakes, Sasha and me, and somehow, things aren’t going like I always thought they would. We’re face to face under 24-hour fluorescents with the thoroughly unromantic buzz of aircon in our ears and endless flabby wedges of seated trucker’s arsecrack as our only visual stimulus.
In a dead-end town like Barwen a girl has only got to be a little different to feel like a freak. And Clancy, a typical sixteen-year-old misfit with a moderately dysfunctional family, a genuine interest in Nature Club and a major crush on the local hot girl, is packing a capital F.
As the summer begins, Clancy’s dad is involved in a road smash that kills two local teenagers. While the family is dealing with the reaction of a hostile town, Clancy meets someone who could possibly—at last—become a friend. Not only that, the unattainable Sasha starts to show what may be a romantic interest.
In short, this is the summer when Clancy has to figure out who the hell she is.


Preorder here: TBD

Disclaimer: I received an e-copy of this book on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


Clancy grows up as a Loner in a small town in Australia, crushing on the local hot girl. Her not-so-normal life gets shaken up terribly after her father is involved in a car crash with two dead. Besides this she also has deal with her not really having any friends that she can talk to, and with her weirdo brother and his conspiration theories. When Sasha, the hot girl, suddenly starts to show interest in her it all gets even more complicated.

I adored Clancy’s character, she was a typical teen at times, angry at everything in this world but most at all herself, fighting with her mum, feeling inadequate and yes, that too, dealing with internalized homophobia.

I liked that Clancy already knew that she liked girls. I can however understand why she still hated herself for it at times especially when she was already emotionally vulnerable. Growing up gay in a small town can be incredible hard and not ever gay teen gets over that easily, so it was nice to read about that as well.

I also liked how Clancy growing up poor and on the outskirts of town was portrayed and that it effected her family’s social status as well. I imagine that this made it way easier for the rest of the town to turn on them even when they didn’t know most of the facts about the accident.

I loved the family dynamics because you could see that despite all their problems they still loved each other. Angus’ and Clancy’s interactions where incredible sweet, yet incredible sibling-like and I enjoyed it a lot! (especially at the ending, ah I love it!)

Another thing I liked was the way how Nancy’s and Clancy’s friendship was handled, especially after the accident and that it wasn’t easy to form it, especially considering how Clancy always feelt as if she doesn’t quite fit anywhere.

The romance was a bit of a downer though, and I have to say that I expected the ending to play out… well not like this. There are loads of homophobic slurs used at some points which doesn’t make certain parts any easier to read, so be warned.

One question still remains: Why does tomboy Clancy, who owns one pair of boots and literally never wears make up, work at a make up centre? Where there no other jobs available? How can you give people make up tips when you don’t wear it yourself? (I couldn’t!)

Also apparently the Slang is very Australian, but I don’t know much about australian Slang, so I can’t comment on it, except that some of the phrases didn’t sound like the UK English that I learned in school 😀 It was nice to read though.

Why I read it: I’ve been interested in this book ever since I found it on goodreads. A coming-of-age story with a lesbian main character set in a small town? And she already knows that she likes girls?  Yes please!

Do I recommend it: Yes. While it’s not the book to read if you’re looking for a lesbian romance (sobs softly – I expected something different as well) it is a nice book about growing up and making real friends, with a nice, yet dysfunctional family and a nice main character. Also the cover is super nice!


What’s your favorite book with sapphic MCs?


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