“Sarah Thornhill” takes up the story of the youngest child of William Thornhill, convict-turned-landholder on theHawkesburyRiverwho was the central character of “The Secret River”.
As Sarah journeys towards womanhood, dark secrets and unacknowledged histories begin to shape her life, her story. The landscape of the Hawkesbury, evoked here so beautifully, is also very much part of that story. Sarah’s triumph lies in the way she meets the challenges which are thrown at her and in her accepting responsibility for the dark deeds of her family’s past.
There are few writers who can combine, as Grenville does, the art of fine storytelling
with the ability to challenge her readers to question their own attitudes, beliefs and prejudices. “Sarah Thornhill” addresses the complexities of colonisation and class in earlyAustralia, not judgementally, nor dogmatically, but with subtlety and sensitivity.
Best of all, this is a very enjoyable and utterly absorbing read, one which I couldn’t put down yet didn’t want to end.
Publication date is 29/08/2011
P.S. This is priced at $5.05 less than Kate’s previous novel – book prices are coming Down!