From one of our master storytellers, author of the bestselling Great Australian Stories, comes another collection of yarns, tall tales, bush legends and colourful characters. Taking us from the deep outback to the glistening sea, they go to the heart of what makes us distinctively Australian.
Graham Seal AM is Professor of Folklore at Curtin University, and a leading expert on traditional Australian culture. He is the author of many books about Australian history and culture, including the bestselling Great Australian Stories and Great Anzac Stories. His These Few Lines: The Lost Lives of Myra and William Sykes won the National Biography Award.
This book is very entertaining and holds the reader's attention as it gives an insight of how life used to be. It is an interesting style of book where the author gives some historical background prior to the yarn. This book is organised in sections relating to different topics so it doesn't have to be read from start to finish.
It would be suited to many Australian curriculum units such as First Contacts along with the unit Community and Remembrance as it gives indigenous, early explorer and settler perspectives. It would also suit geography studies as it relates to change over time. In literacy, this book would be useful as shared reading as well as analysis of poetry and verse. Some stories also relate to Indigenous perspectives of sustainability that can be useful in environmental studies. This book adds to who we are today as a nation and how we have evolved. As a multicultural society we are at risk of losing our 'bush tales'. It was a thorough enjoyable read.
Michelle Hackett, Romsey Primary School VIC
What a fabulous resource for any coffee table or library! Graham Seal’s stories and narrative of Australia’s journey builds on previous work and puts a more serious slant on the yarns gathered earlier but such writers Bill Wannan. Since getting this book to review I have read it, browsed it and gone back to look for specific tales complementary to other subjects I am reading. Seal weaves an erudite study of various themes in Australia’s (written) history. The relaxing part of this book is that it reads as a series of yarns. It is friendly and approachable; entertaining and informative. It gives food for thought.
Stories covered are grouped into phases of Australia’s past; favourite or popular themes are quick to find and each contains a snippet or two of the unusual and the less well known.
For a general reader it is an asset for every class room. As an easy access afternoon reader for an interesting change of focus it is entertaining – and frequently a conversation starter. It provides a springboard into asking effective research questions and further inquiry. It should sell itself!
Michael Cruickshank, Hellyer College, TAS