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Mentone Girls' Grammar School | Kerferd Library

Broader Reading | Indigenous Australians: Fiction

Senior School books in the Kerferd Library that support an understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, culture, history, and identity.
Resource Key

When accessing content use the numbers below to guide you:

LEVEL

Brief, basic information laid out in an easy-to-read format. May use informal language. (Includes most news articles)

LEVEL

Provides additional background information and further reading. Introduces some subject-specific language.

Level 3 resourceLEVEL

Lengthy, detailed information. Frequently uses technical/subject-specific language. (Includes most analytical articles)

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Print fiction books you can borrow

InformationThere are many more books on Indigenous Australians in the Kerferd Library. Use the explore link to browse this collection.

Walking the Boundaries

All Martin wants to do is walk the boundaries and the farm will be his. It seems like a huge joke when his great-grandfather tells him that he doesn't even have to walk all the way around the fences. It is a bright and sunny day when Martin sets out but suddenly he finds himself being swept away in a flash flood! Meg rescues him, and Wullamudulla saves them both from a bushfire. What kind of strange boundary has he crossed?

Birrung : the secret friend

Birrung, a young indigenous girl, befriends orphaned Barney and his friend Elsie. Birrung is living with Mr Johnson, chaplain to the Australian colony in 1790, and his family. Generous in spirit, the Johnson family also take in Barney and Elsie who have only just been surviving on their meagre daily rations. Despite living with the Johnsons, Birrung's connection to her people remains strong, and when Mr and Mrs Johnson see how Barney's feeling for Birrung are growing, they gently explain that his friendship with a 'native' girl and all that she taught him about her language and lore must remain a secret - forever.

Two ways strong : Jaz's story

Going to boarding school can be a difficult transition for many students, but for Indigenous students from remote communities, it can be quite a culture shock. In Two Ways Strong, Indigenous students from Concordia Lutheran College have combined to tell their experience in a story about Jaz a young girl from Palm Island who goes to boarding school at the age of fourteen.

Where we begin

Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2021 - Writing for Young Adults shortlist

"Seventeen-year-old Anna is running into the night. Fleeing her boyfriend, her mother, and everything she has known. She is travelling into the country, to the land and the grandparents she has never met, looking for answers to questions that have never been asked. For every family has secrets. But some secrets - once laid bare - can never be forgiven."

Ruby Moonlight

Tells the story of a young Aboriginal woman in the late nineteenth century who survives the massacre of her entire family. Wandering alone through Ngadjuri land, in South Australia, she encounters a luckless Irish trapper whose loneliness matches her own. Drawn together for comfort, they discover a momentary paradise along riverbanks and across arid plains that proves fragile in the face of frontier violence and colonization.

Songs that sound like blood

Roxy May Redding's got music in her soul and songs in her blood. She lives in a small, hot, dusty town and she's dreaming big. When she gets the chance to study music in the big city, she takes it. In Roxy's new life, her friends and her music collide in ways she could never have imagined.

Becoming Kirrali Lewis

Set within the explosive cultural shifts of the 1960's and 1980's, Becoming Kirrali Lewis chronicles the journey of a young First Nations Australian teenager as she leaves her home town in rural Victoria to take on a law degree in the city of Melbourne in 1985. Adopted at birth by a white family, Kirrali doesn't question her cultural roots until a series of life-changing events force her to face up to her true identity.

Calypso Summer [Print book]

Calypso is a young Nukunu man, fresh out of high school in Rastafarian guise. He finds work at the Henley Beach Health Food shop where his boss pressures him to gather Aboriginal plants for natural remedies. Growing up in urban Adelaide and with little understanding of his mother's traditional background, Calypso endeavors to find the appropriate native plants. The support of a sassy, smart, young Ngadjuri girl helps Calypso to reconsider his Rastafarian façade and understand how to take charge of his future.

The yield [Print edition]

After a decade in Europe August Gondiwindi returns to Australia for the funeral of her much-loved grandfather, Albert, at Prosperous House, her only real home and also a place of great grief and devastation. Leading up to his death Poppy Gondiwindi has been compiling a dictionary of the language he was forbidden from speaking after being sent to Prosperous House as a child. Poppy was the family storyteller and August is desperate to find the precious book that he had spent his last energies compiling. The Yield, in exquisite prose, carefully and delicately wrestles with questions of environmental degradation, pre-white contact agriculture, theft of language and culture, water, religion and consumption within the realm of a family mourning the death of a beloved man.

Where the fruit falls

Spanning four generations, with a focus on the 1960s and 70s, an era of rapid social change and burgeoning Aboriginal rights, Where the Fruit Falls is a re-imagining of the epic Australian novel. Brigid Devlin, a young Aboriginal woman, and her twin daughters navigate a troubled nation of First Peoples, settlers and refugees - all determined to shape a future on stolen land.

The white girl

Odette Brown has lived her whole life on the fringes of a small country town. After her daughter disappeared and left her with her granddaughter Sissy to raise on her own, Odette has managed to stay under the radar of the welfare authorities who are removing fair-skinned Aboriginal children from their families. When a new policeman arrives in town, determined to enforce the law, Odette must risk everything to save Sissy and protect everything she loves.

Song of the crocodile

"Darnmoor, The Gateway to Happiness. The sign taunts a fool into feeling some sense of achievement, some kind of end - that you have reached a destination in the very least. Yet as the sign states, Darnmoor is merely a gateway, a waypoint on the road to where you really want to be. Darnmoor is the home of the Billymil family, three generations who have lived in this 'gateway town'. Race relations between Indigenous and settler families are fraught, though the rigid status quo is upheld through threats and soft power rather than the overt violence of yesteryear. As progress marches forwards, Darnmoor and its surrounds undergo rapid social and environmental changes, but as some things change, some stay exactly the same.

Kindred

Kirli Saunders debut poetry collection, is a pleasure to lose yourself in. Kirli has a keen eye for observation, humour and big themes that surround Love/Connection/Loss in an engaging style, complemented by evocative and poignant imagery. It talks to identity, culture, community and the role of Earth as healer. Kindred has the ability to grab hold of the personal in the universal and reflect this back to the reader.

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