First novel for 5 years from Orange prize-winning Kate Grenville. Blanket review coverage backed by a major advertising campaign. A dramatic and evocative historical novel set between the slums of Nineteenth-century London and the convict colonies of Australia. Following a childhood marked by poverty and petty crime in the slums of London, William ...
First novel for 5 years from Orange prize-winning Kate Grenville. Blanket review coverage backed by a major advertising campaign. A dramatic and evocative historical novel set between the slums of Nineteenth-century London and the convict colonies of Australia. Following a childhood marked by poverty and petty crime in the slums of London, William Thornhill is sentenced in 1806 to be transported to New South Wales for the term of his natural life. With his wife and children, he arrives in a harsh land to a life that feels like a death sentence. But, among the convicts there is a whisper - that freedom can be bought - an opportunity to start afresh on lush, 'unclaimed' land away from the infant township of Sydney, up the Hawkesbury River. As Thornhill and his family stake their claim on a patch of ground by the river, the battle lines between old and new settlers are drawn. Whilst some attempt to reconcile themselves with the place and its native people, others fear of this alien world turns into brutal depravity towards it. "The Secret River" joins a tradition of grand historical action. It sensuously etches the intense light and scribble of the Australian bush onto the page, making them the backdrop to a story about ownership, belonging and identity - themes which are timeless and universal.
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I listened to The Secret River on audio, and I was sorry when it was over. The story of the early English settlement of Australia is told through the life of an English beggar and condemned man who receives a gubernatorial pardon and free passage to Sydney -- along with thousands of others of England's poor. I can see why the Australian's love Kate Grenville: the story is vividly drawn and translated well into audio.
Apr 3, 2007
Loved this book
A wonderful summary of new beginnings in a new land encased in a hard to put down novel. This story is of a convict's freedom in a new land and his obsession for land. A clash of cultures ending in tragedy.
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