The good folk at Book’d Out and Confessions from Romaholics have initiated a very cool idea for this Australia Day. In a nutshell, Australian book bloggers (and authors, booksellers and publishers) sign up to be part of a blog hop – all with the intentions of drawing attention to Australian authors, new and old. We are also encouraged to host a giveaway as well – a book from an Australian author.
To this end, I have chosen a hardcover copy of ‘Sarah Thornhill’ by Kate Grenville.
To be in the running to win this excellent book, all you have to do is leave a comment below and tell us who your favourite author is. You can also leave a comment on our Facebook page or send us your answer on Twitter @areadersheaven
Sarah Thornhill by Kate Grenville
When The Secret River – a novel about frontier violence in early Australia – appeared in 2005, it became an immediate best-seller. It also caused controversy for its frank depiction of Australia’s past. The follow-up novel, The Lieutenant, continued Grenville’s exploration of first contact between white and black – in sunlight rather than shadow this time. Now Sarah Thornhill extends the story into the next generation.
Sarah is born in 1816, her father an ex-convict who’s made good in the new colony of Australia. Three hundred acres, a fine stone house, the money rolling in – William Thornhill is a man who’s re-invented himself. As he tells his daughter, he never looks back, and Sarah grows up learning not to ask about the past.
Her stepmother calls her wilful, but handsome Jack Langland loves Sarah and she loves him. Me and Jack, she thinks, what could go wrong?
But there’s a secret in the Thornhill family. It comes out, as secrets will, and draws everything into its tangles. It casts a long chill shadow over life in the Hawkesbury valley.
That secret propels Sarah backwards, into the darkness of her family’s past. And it propels her forwards, into a future very different from the one she’d imagined for herself. She travels across the ocean to the wild coasts of New Zealand, and among the strangers of that other place she sees the way things truly are.
Sarah Thornhill is set in the past, but it’s as much about today as about yesterday. It’s about the dark legacies hidden in families, about love and unlooked-for happiness, and about keeping stories alive.
Along with The Secret River and The Lieutenant, this novel forms the third book in Kate Grenville’s “Colonial Trilogy”. The Lieutenant tells the story of the first generation of Europeans in Australia, when conversation between black and white was still possible. The Secret River is about the next generation, when that conversation was closed down by violence. Sarah Thornhill is about the third generation, the ones who have to deal with what the past has created, and have the responsibility to tell its story.