It's set around a boarding school on the Jellicoe Road in regional New South Wales. The school mainly seems to be for gifted troubled children, and Melina Marchetta taps into the teenage angst very well. But the characters are still endearing, and you really want them to find stability and happiness.
Heartrending at times, I admire how these teenagers act and their approach to life, despite everything that they have been through. It gave me a lot of hope that people, with the support of good friends, can make it through anything.
I have read a couple of books recently with endings that seemed premature. This doesn't do that - and it is so satisfying. There were a few places where I thought "Oh, no. It's going to end here", but it continued on and tied up every loose end very neatly, and left me with such a glowing feeling at the end. A perfect young adult book.