'In 2001 I travelled to south-west Western Australia to research my first novel, the springboard for which was nineteenth-century botanist Georgiana Molloy who had emigrated from England to Augusta with her husband John Molloy in 1829. My friend and I pulled up at Wonnerup House, the homestead of the Laymans, who had lived with the Molloys at Augusta before moving to Wonnerup. We wandered through cold, square rooms, then out into the sunshine. This was the place, a small placard read, where George Layman was speared by Gayware, a Wardandi Nyungar. Our reconnaissance complete, we sat on the grass before the house, unpacked some baguettes and smeared them with cheese. We were impervious to the violence that once arose from those smooth, glossy lawns.' (Introduction)
Editor's note: Readers are cautioned that this paper contains the names of deceased Wardandi Nyungars, and that some of the historical accounts are offensive and distressing in their terminology and descriptions.