The 2023 Longlist was announced on 14 February and the Shortlist will be chosen in the Spring. The winning title for 2023 will be announced in June at the Borders Book Festival event in Melrose, Scotland.
11 of the 12 Longlisted titles are available here (some in soon-to-be published paperback editions as well as hardback). One title - THE SETTLEMENT by Jock Serong (Text Publishing, Australia) - is not available on this platform, so please contact us directly if you would like us to try and source a copy for you.
THE SETTLEMENT by Jock Serong, Text Publishing, Australia. Currently unavailable via Bookshop.org
Newly colonised Australia, 1831, and The Man (identified in the foreword as George Augustus Robinson) brings a small group of convicts and Aboriginal locals to attempt to locate the Big River Tribe. The aim is to move them off their land and onto one of the remote Furneaux Islands before settlers move in and kill them. Once there, The Man will become The Commandant and continue his colonisation experiment, attempting to ‘Europeanise’ the natives. In this, the final part of Serong’s three historical novels series – preceded by Preservation and The Burning Island — and narrated by Whelk, a boy who sees the worst of colonisation but still finds his own way to fight back, the themes of colonialisation, exploitation and resilience loom large and the beauty of the Furneaux Islands stands in constant and affecting contrast to the abhorrent ugliness of the colonialist project and its brutality.