Novel set in Australia – The Silence by Susan Allott
Bookreview of The Silence
The Silence by Susan Allott – It looks at the forced removal of Aboriginal children from their families in the early 1900s and the consequences. This is not a subject I’d read about in a book before so I was intrigued to read this. It was going to be painful in places and shocking too but what I gained from this was a deeper country to have forcible removed children from their homes but I’d never thought about it happening in Australia for some reason.
This is a book I nave been waiting to read but without knowing it. It looks at the forced removal of Aboriginal children from their families in the early 1900s and the consequences.
This then leads into other issues about relations between Australia and Britain. What a period of history this was! Shocking and cruel and I can’t believe I hadn’t heard of the events this book deals with.
This then the powerful background, the main story starts with a young girl returning to Australia to see her father and then finding out secrets about him and her family that deal with shocking historical crimes. AS you might expect, it’s highly emotional and to think the disappearance in the novel is not noted for some 30 years! This was immersive and powerful from the start and I read hungrily buoyed by the great writing and the emotive subject.
I read in the author note that the author has a story to tell about homesickness having moved to Australia herself but that she found this story and wove the threads together. This was very cleverly done and I was invested in each and every one of the characters from the start. It’s certainly not easy reading. Certainly not that. The writer moves from past to present with ease and it builds up to a very impressive and heartbreaking finale. This book has broken me. I feel humbled after reading it and kudos to the author for drawing me in, making me care and wanting to learn more about the Aborigine culture and history.
I went through the entire gamut of emotions: sadness, grief, anger, shock, admiration and everything inbetween. Highly recommended.