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and life along the winding road

Friday, April 24, 2015

The Lure of the Bush by Arthur W. Upfield

Lure of the Bush by Arthur W. Upfield was originally published with the title The Barrakee Mystery. It was written in the 1920s at a time when the population of Australia was close to that of London.

Arthur W. Upfield was born in England but sets the reader in Australia (where he was sent by his father when Arthur was in his teenage years). The descriptions in Lure of the Bush were detailed and taken from his life boundary riding, cattle droving, opal gouging and general station worker.

The story is of the death of an aborigine, King Henry, and the investigation of his death by Napoleon Bonaparte from Queensland known as the finest bush detective in the Commonwealth and nicknamed 'Bony'.

My thoughts:
I enjoyed getting to know a little about the history of Australia (New South Wales) where land was apparently bought up by several landowners and the rest of the populace scrambled to carve out a little piece in a lottery system. Since we now strive to be politically correct there are many terms that would be frowned upon today. Bony is referred to as a half-caste (aboriginal mother and white father) and the aborigines are referred to as 'blacks'. There are beautiful descriptions and Bony is a remarkable detective and tracker. He could detect what type of boomerang was used to leave a slash in the tree. All in all it was an enjoyable read.

1 comment:

Nan said...

Oh my gosh! You are reading Upfield!! He has been my little course for the past months. I'm up to, let's see 22 I think in his series. I've bought nonfiction books about his work, and more of his stories. I'm so enjoying my time in Australia. Tickled that you are also reading him.