The Secret River

Text Publishing
41

In 1806 William Thornhill, a man of quick temper and deep feelings, is transported from the slums of London to New South Wales for the term of his natural life. With his wife Sal and their children he arrives in a harsh land he cannot understand. But the colony can turn a convict into a free man.

Eight years later Thornhill sails up the Hawkesbury to claim a hundred acres for himself. Aboriginal people already live on that river. And other recent arrivals—Thomas Blackwood, Smasher Sullivan and Mrs Herring—are finding their own ways to respond to them.

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

Inspired by research into her own family history, Kate Grenville vividly creates the reality of settler life, its longings, dangers and dilemmas. The Secret River is a brilliantly written book, a groundbreaking story about identity, belonging and ownership.
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More by Kate Grenville

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Listen, I told myself, and heard the waves against the harbour-wall, a gull being peevish, the white tapping stick of a blind man against the stones. Listen, I told myself, this is history.

Loosely inspired by the legendary Sydney bohemian Bea Miles, Kate Grenville’s much-loved debut novel recounts the life of the irrepressible Lilian Una Singer: from wealthy middle-class girlhood under the rule of a monstrous father, to outspoken independence in adulthood, and eventually sleeping rough on the city’s streets in later years, her spirit undaunted. Bold, exuberant and richly imaginative, Lilian’s Story was acclaimed as a masterpiece on its publication in 1985. It is unforgettable.

Kate Grenville is one of Australia’s most celebrated writers. Her international bestseller The Secret River was awarded local and overseas prizes, has been adapted for the stage and as an acclaimed television miniseries, and is now a much-loved classic. Grenville’s other novels include Sarah Thornhill, The Lieutenant, Dark Places and the Orange Prize winner The Idea of Perfection. Her most recent books are two works of non-fiction, One Life: My Mother’s Story and The Case Against Fragrance, and the bestselling 2020 novel A Room Made of Leaves. She has also written three books about the writing process. In 2017 Grenville was awarded the Australia Council Award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature. She lives in Melbourne.

‘Dazzling fiction of universal appeal.’ Patrick White

‘Very moving and sometimes funny...Evocative and poetic.’ Elizabeth Jolley

‘A work of considerable beauty and power...An uncompromising vision...told with honesty and virtuosity.’ New York Times Book Review

‘One of the great Australian novels...Luminous...A triumph.’ Australian Book Review

4.0
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Additional Information

Publisher
Text Publishing
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Published on
May 3, 2010
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Pages
352
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ISBN
9781921520341
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / General
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Content protection
This content is DRM protected.
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