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Joan Lindsay’s 1967 novel Picnic at Hanging Rock has gripped the Australian public’s imagination for five decades. We can’t seem to let this novel go: its spooky, dramatic and sometimes sensational tale of the disappearance of three young women and a teacher after a school picnic in the bush is going to be retold, again, in a television series from Foxtel later this year.' (Introduction)
'Now in its 37th year, The Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award has become an institution. Awarded to an unpublished manuscript by a writer under 35, it has helped launch the careers of authors such as Tim Winton, Kate Grenville, Andrew McGahan and Gillian Mears. It has delivered a literary scandal in the shape of Helen Darville/Demidenko. And it has offered a fascinating window to the transformation of Australian culture and society across the past four decades.' (Introduction)
'When the extended Alden-Stowe clan decides to sell its decrepit, heavily mortgaged heirloom estate to a billion-dollar company, it’s supposed to be a straightforward transaction: pots of money in exchange for land earmarked for large-scale agricultural works.' (Introduction)
'In the early 19th century, 38 German Lutheran families, escaping the threat of persecution under the Prussian king, arrived in Port Adelaide, eventually establishing a small settlement in the Adelaide Hills. It was the first of several waves of German immigration to the area, the newcomers building villages and cultivating the land, all the while holding to their own religion, customs and traditions.' (Introduction)