Books that Made Us
A cultural history of Australia told through our fiction.
Australia's novels lie at the heart of the country. Capturing everyday lives and exceptional dreams, they have held up a mirror to the nation, reflecting the good and the bad. In this companion book to the ABC TV series, Carl Reinecke looks at the history of Australian culture through the books we have read and the stories we have told.
Touching on colonial invasion, the bush myth, world wars, mass migration, the recognition of Indigenous sovereignty and the emergence of a modern, global, multicultural nation Carl examines how these pivotal events and persuasive ideas have shaped some of Australia's most influential novels, and how these books, in turn, made us.
In a panoramic account of Australian fiction stretching from Marcus Clarke to Melissa Lucashenko, Patrick White to Peter Carey, and Henry Handel Richardson to Michelle de Kretser, this is a new history of key authors and compelling books that have kept us reading and made a difference for over 200 years.