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Publisher's Summary

Sarah Thornhill is the youngest child of William Thornhill, convict-turned-landowner on the Hawkesbury River. Her stepmother calls her wilful, but handsome Jack Langland loves her and she loves him. 'Me and Jack', she thinks. 'How could it go wrong?' But there's an ugly secret in Sarah's family. That secret takes her into the darkness of the past, and across the ocean to the wild coasts of New Zealand.
Among the strangers of that other place, she can begin to understand. Kate Grenville takes us back to the early Australia of The Secret River and the Thornhill family. This is Sarah's story. It's a story of love lost and found, tangled histories and how it matters to keep stories alive.
©2012 Kate Grenville (P)2012 Canongate Books
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Kimberly on 10-18-12

Absorbing, first-rate historical novel

What a great book! Read a glowing review of it in the NYTimes and the audio book did not disappoint. The story is a continuation of Grenville's "The Secret River" - also a great listen - and I really recommend reading/listening to that first to get the full impact of this story. What a compelling character Grenville has crafted in Sarah - I rooted for her, my heart broke for her and I was uplifted when she was uplifted. Emma Fielding does a top-notch job of capturing Sarah's unique voice and making it her own - no play-acting here, just real feeling. Excellent all around.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Heather on 05-08-12

Very interesting

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sarah was my favourite character, perhaps as she was the main one.

What about Emma Fielding’s performance did you like?

She had the accent down pat. She was engaging and interesting to listen to.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes. but I didn't like the ending

Any additional comments?

Loved listening to this book, especially as it was about the early days of the Hawkesbury river and beyond. The ending was disjointed from the rest of the book though.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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4 out of 5 stars
By Katie on 12-27-12

Good

I was pleased to come across this follow up to 'The Secret River', having enjoyed listening to it. Whilst it's not quite as good as its prequel, it is still definitely good and worth a listen. About the relationships between the native aborigines and the settlers, it highlights changing attitudes, and just how poor these relationships could be.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Maddy on 10-27-12

A poor sequel

I thought this a poor sequel to the Secret River. Far too long is spent on the teenage passion of the eponymous heroine in the first part of the novel and I almost gave up in boredom. The tale eventually picks up although it lacks the pace and drama of the Secret River and doesn't make up for it in depth.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By A. Gander on 05-04-18

Worthy sequel

I enjoyed The Secret River and was left wondering what happened in the years that followed these characters. I enjoyed the focus on a daughter and the switch to first person narration. Some parts were a little hurried and I’m not sure quite matched up in terms of believeability but it was a sweet coming of age story that explored first love. The journey to New Zealand felt rushed and distracted from the issues of racism and the horrific treatment of indigenous Australians. But overall, the narrator was good and I couldn’t stop listening to this and finished it quickly. A few days later and I’m still thinking of these characters and Grenville’s message about the importance telling our ancestors’ stories.

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3 out of 5 stars
By Susie on 11-13-16

Dreary

Pleasant sorry but spoken with undertones of despair when, at times, there could have been joy. Rather a bleak story but made moreso.

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