I am delighted to announce that I am near to completing my second novel - Benevolence. It is about an Aboriginal young woman who is given as a child to the Native School in Parramatta NSW Australia in 1817. Her life unfolds with exciting adventures and curious events. She has a child with a Church of England curate and is thrown out of the house by his jealous wife.SYNOPSIS - BENEVOLENCE
It is the killing times in NSW history. Not every Aboriginal person is massacred. Many
survive and become notorious, like Mary James. This is a story of the Hawkesbury River,
from a Darug Aboriginal point of view: 1810 - 1853.
Mary is given away by her father to Governor Lachlan Macquarie for a Native School. At fifteen, she absconds into the bush with Boothuri, a myall Aboriginal. They join a band of mountain warriors lead by Chief Tedbury.
Mary returns to the town and works for Reverend Smythe at the Female Orphan School. She has a love affair with him and has a child, Eleanor. The wife of the reverend arrives and jealousy results in Mary’s expulsion.
After leaving her daughter with a farmer, Mary is imprisoned for stealing. She works as a servant for the brutal, Reverend Masters. Mary is forced to lead Captain Woodrow on an expedition to track down mountain warriors.
Mary returns to Masters to ask for employment but leaves when he tries to take her new child. At Marra Marra Creek, a confrontation ends with Masters drowned.
Bowen Bungaree takes Mary on a journey to El Dorado in California. They return across the Pacific Ocean to Palm Beach.
Novelist: THE CROCODILE HOTEL A new novel published by Cylops Press 2015.
To be launched at the Melbourne Writers Festival 29th August 2.30pm at the Optic Club, Federation Square. BOOK LAUNCH BY SUE INGLETON, COMEDIAN
Julie Janson THE CROCODILE HOTEL 110,000 words Jane Reynolds, a young teacher from Sydney, begins a position on a remote cattle property, Harrison Station, south of Arnhem Land. It is 1976. The caravan school has fifty two traditional Aboriginal children of the Lanniwah nation and the love interest of a young male Aboriginal Teaching Assistant named David Yaniwuy.
Jane arrives with her five year old son Aaron, but she is unmarried. She is of Aboriginal descent and is reassessing the family secret of their identity. Harrison Station is a lonely place, and Jane is sustained by her friendship with the Lanniwah children and traditional women such as Old Lucy. Jane is confronted with the racism of the cattle station Boss, Hubert Barkley and his wife Edie.
Jane is swept up in a year of wonders, as she negotiates her place between the black and white societies. She fights for land rights and respect for herself and the Lanniwah people. The predominant theme that emerges is the negotiation of identity and social status for a woman, born between cultures, who wants to overcome her ‘double stain, double shame’, and claim a legitimate place for herself and establish a sense of belonging. Jane is sexual, courageous and passionate and she is swept up in a tempestuous story of the Northern Territory that reveals the bloody history of the country and the Lanniwah people’s magic realism in their cultural landscape.
Currently writing second novel: BENEVOLENCE