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The Secret River by Kate Grenville
  

The Secret River

Literary Fiction   Historical Fiction   eBook Favourites   
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Sarah Broadhurst's view...

One of Anne Berry's favourite books.

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2006.

An epic novel of the early settlers in Australia, of the plight of the Aborigines and the crushing of ambition by the pure hardship of developing the land. We know the history but interestingly this leaves the reader to decide on the rights and wrongs as the facts are portrayed. It’s a very grand, rich, multifaceted work indeed.

Comparison: Indra Sinha, Khaled Husseini, Barbara Kingsolver.

If you like Kate Grenville you might also like to read books by Barbara Kingsolver, Anne Michaels and Helen Dunmore.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

Synopsis

The Secret River by Kate Grenville

London, 1807.

William Thornhill, happily wedded to his childhood sweetheart Sal, is a waterman on the River Thames. Life is tough but bearable until William makes a mistake, a bad mistake for which he and his family are made to pay dearly. His sentence: to be transported to New South Wales for the term of his natural life.

The Thornhills arrive in this harsh and alien land that they cannot understand and which feels like a death sentence. But among the convicts there is a rumour that freedom can be bought, that `unclaimed' land up the Hawkesbury offers an opportunity to start afresh, far away from the township of Sydney. When William takes a hundred acres for himself he is shocked to find Aboriginal people already living on the river. And other recent arrivals - Thomas Blackwood, Smasher Sullivan and Mrs Herring - are finding their own ways to respond to them.

Soon Thornhill, a man neither better nor worse than most, has to make the most difficult decision of his life ...

Reviews

"Kate Grenville has transformed an Australian myth into a dazzling fiction of universal appeal. It is a pleasure to be able to praise a true novelist."
Patrick White

"Here is someone who can really write."
Peter Carey

"A powerful storyteller."
New York Times

About the Author

Kate Grenville

Kate Grenville was born in Sydney. Her most recent novel, The Idea of Perfection, won the Orange Prize for Fiction and became a long-running bestseller. Her five other works of fiction have won numerous awards. Kate Grenville lives in Sydney with her family.

Fellow novelist ANNE BERRY on KATE GRENVILLE

Quite honestly words fail me when it comes to Kate Grenville’s Secret River. It stands alone. It is exemplary. We are whisked away from England in the company of convicted criminal William Thornhill and his wife, Sal, to a convict colony in Sydney, Australia. It is there that he settles with his family, determined to work the land and make a good life for himself. But he soon comes into conflict with the native Aborigines. It is a treasure this story, told in my opinion by one of the finest writers I have ever read.

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Book Info

Publication date

5th May 2011

Author

Kate Grenville

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Author's Website

www.users.bigpond.com/kgren...

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Publisher

Canongate Books Ltd

Format

Paperback (b Format)
352 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
Historical Fiction
eBook Favourites

Historical fiction

ISBN

9780857860842

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