When Only One

Meg Gatland-Veness

‘There’s someone in the school. They’re holding something in their hands. Something terrifying.’

1984. Sam lives with his mum, dad and four brothers in a small farming town and life is pretty good. He works as a lifeguard at the local surf club, is saving to buy his first car, trains with his friends for the Ironman, and on Sunday afternoons he and his family take care packages to their less fortunate neighbours. Then, five years since they last spoke, Emily Burrow climbs through his bedroom window and back into Sam’s life.

Emily’s life couldn’t be more different. She lives with her mother, who struggles with mental health, and sometimes her alcoholic father, but it’s better when he’s not there. There’s no hope for Emily’s future, and she seems to be the only one who both knows and accepts it. That’s why, to Emily, help is just not necessary.

The new school year brings a heap of changes. Emily starts to hang out with Sam and his mates. A new girl arrives and Sam is smitten, but she brings with her unexpected adjustments. And Sam’s friend Miles faces the biggest challenge of his life. When tragedy strikes one sunny afternoon, everything they thought they knew about growing up will change and they will be forced to face adulthood head on.

From the bestselling author of I Had Such Friends comes a gritty novel, full of heart, that shines a light on kids who are doing it tough in a rural Australian town.

A powerful, unflinching study of poverty, grief, mental illness and family dysfunction, and the devastating effects these can have on the teens who slip through the cracks

- Jaclyn Moriarty

An addictive page turner with so much heart.

- Eliza Henry-Jones

By the same author:
I Had Such Friends
Paperback & ebook
YA contemporary fiction

Meg Gatland-Veness

Meg Gatland-Veness is a high school drama teacher. She attended the University of Newcastle where she studied a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Secondary Teaching.
Meg has been writing stories for as long as she can remember and reading them even longer. Equal to her love of words is her passion for championing local youths and fostering important conversation about issues facing young Australians.
Meg was born in a tiny country town called Milton and now lives on the Central Coast of New South Wales. When she’s not writing novels, she channels her creativity into choreographing and directing musicals, writing poetry, singing and dancing.

Pantera Press

Pantera Press is a young and enthusiastic publisher of titles that spark imagination, conversation and change. We publish fiction, non-fiction, illustrated non-fiction and a growing list of children’s titles.

When Only One
Katy McEwen