'His father dead by fire and his mother plagued by demons of her own, William is cast upon the charity of his unknown uncle - an embittered old man encamped in the ruins of a once great station homestead, Kuran House. It's a baffling and sinister new world for the boy, a place of decay and secret histories. His uncle is obsessed by a long life of decline and by a dark quest for revival, his mother is desperate for a wealth and security she has never known, and all their hopes it seems come to rest upon William's young shoulders. But as the past and present of Kuran Station unravel and merge together, the price of that inheritance may prove to be the downfall of them all. The White Earth is a haunting, disturbing and cautionary tale.' (publisher's website)
'"I lost my own father at 12 yr. of age and know what it is to be raised on lies and silences my dear daughter you are presently too young to understand a word I write but this history is for you and will contain no single lie may I burn in Hell if I speak false."
'In TRUE HISTORY OF THE KELLY GANG, the legendary Ned Kelly speaks for himself, scribbling his narrative on errant scraps of paper in semi-literate but magically descriptive prose as he flees from the police. To his pursuers, Kelly is nothing but a monstrous criminal, a thief and a murderer. To his own people, the lowly class of ordinary Australians, the bushranger is a hero, defying the authority of the English to direct their lives. Indentured by his bootlegger mother to a famous horse thief (who was also her lover), Ned saw his first prison cell at 15 and by the age of 26 had become the most wanted man in the wild colony of Victoria, taking over whole towns and defying the law until he was finally captured and hanged. Here is a classic outlaw tale, made alive by the skill of a great novelist.' (From the publisher's website.)First prize shared between Peter Carey and Alan Gould (Schoonermaster's Dance)
'Sarah Tilber has a passion for history. Captivated by the mysterious Charlie Tilber she embarks on a journey across the world, determined to uncover his secrets. But as she becomes more deeply involved in her project Sarah begins to lose her ties with the present, drifting away on the sea of the past. It is left to her friend, Jenn, to piece together the fragments of two lives and thereby uncover a haunting which stretches across the Tilber generations.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.First prize shared between Alan Gould and Peter Carey (True History of the Kelly Gang)
'A broadly chronological account of [Nowra's] childhood and eventual progression towards maturity, love and playwriting' (Dianne Dempsey 'Emerging from the Chrysalis').
'Written with the same lyrical intensity and spellbinding prose that has won Robert Drewe's fiction international acclaim, The Shark Net is set in the 1950s in a city haunted by the menace of an elusive serial killer. Drewe's youth in the middle-class seaside suburb of Perth, Australia—often described as the most isolated city in the world—takes a sinister turn when a social outcast (who turns out to be an employee of Drewe's father) embarks on a five-year murder spree. This unusual memoir brilliantly evokes the confluence of adolescent innocence and sexual awakening while a hare-lipped killer who eventually murders eight people, including one of Drewe's friends, lurks in the shadows.' (Publication summary).