Ash Mountain



Single-mother Fran returns to her sleepy hometown to care for her dying father when a devastating bush fire breaks out. A heartbreaking, nail-biting disaster-noir thriller from the bestselling author of The Cry and Worst Case Scenario.

‘Urgent, angry, absolutely terrifying, yet suffused with the humanity and humour you expect from a Helen Fitzgerald novel’ Erin Kelly

‘Tantalisingly powerful’ The Times

‘Ash Mountain is the author at her masterly best … I loved it!’ Louise Candlish


Fran hates her hometown, and she thought she’d escaped. But her father is ill, and needs care. Her relationship is over, and she hates her dead-end job in the city, anyway.

She returns home to nurse her dying father, her distant teenage daughter in tow for the weekends. There, in the sleepy town of Ash Mountain, childhood memories prick at her fragile self-esteem, she falls in love for the first time, and her demanding dad tests her patience, all in the unbearable heat of an Australian summer. As past friendships and rivalries are renewed, and new ones forged, Fran’s tumultuous home life is the least of her worries, when old crimes rear their heads and a devastating bushfire ravages the town and all of its inhabitants…

Simultaneously a warm, darkly funny portrait of small-town life – and a woman and a land in crisis – and a shocking and truly distressing account of a catastrophic event that changes things forever, Ash Mountain is a heart-breaking slice of domestic noir, and a disturbing disaster thriller that you will never forget…


‘A new novel from Helen Fitzgerald is always a major event, and Ash Mountain is magnificent’ Mark Billingham

‘There is plenty of human depravity in the plot but none of that is as terrifyingly overmastering as the fire’ Literary Review

‘Domestic life is rarely served up quite so dark as this – but that only makes you hungry for more’ The Sun

‘Dark, atmospheric and terrifying’ Ambrose Parry

‘Compelling’ Independent

‘A hugely entertaining writer, with lovingly constructed landscapes and so-real-you-can-actually-hear-it dialogue but the thing she does best of all is create a little warm and cosy microcosm of life, then throw in a bloody great firecracker of a detail that sends the whole thing off into a completely different direction’ Crime Fiction Lover

Praise for Helen FitzGerald

***Worst Case Scenario was Shortlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2020***

‘The plotting is intricate and beautifully handled, and the narrative pace is absolutely breakneck … a wonderful, energetic, hard-hitting and deeply funny novel’ The Big Issue

‘The main character is one of the most extraordinary you’ll meet between the pages of a book’ Ian Rankin

‘A dark, comic masterpiece which manages to be both excruciatingly tense and laugh out loud funny at the same time’ Mark Edwards

‘The classic thriller gets a hell of a twist’ Heat

‘FitzGerald writes like a more focused Irvine Welsh or a less misogynist Philip Roth’ Daily Telegraph

‘Domestic life is rarely served up quite so dark as this – but that only makes you hungry for more’ The Sun

Product Details

£8.99  £8.54
Orenda Books
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