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The Yalda Crossing
by

A powerful novel about our frontier history which should be read by every Australian

A$32.95
(Paperback)
Available. Dispatched 2-3 business days
Overview

As a successful trader and merchant in Sydney in the late 1870s, ‘Young James’ Beckett believes he has put his past behind him. When the enigmatic bushman Lancaster reappears in his life, Beckett knows he must confront the haunting truth of his early years.

After arriving in New South Wales in 1832, Young James and his father, the Captain, set out with an expedition of convicts and a guide called Lancaster to claim property on the Morrombidgee River in Wiradjuri country. Lancaster’s unusual knowledge of the Wiradjuri initially helps the Becketts to peacefully establish their pastoral holding, Yalda Waters. But after Young James meets Tomawirra, a local Wiradjuri man, and witnesses some of his culture, he begins to see why this land will never truly be theirs.

As land is opened up for further settlement, more whites arrive and the delicate balance that has been in place between the Beckett family and the Wiradjuri is shattered. When the new settlers destroy sacred sites and hunting ground, the Wiradjuri retaliate with attacks on settlers and their stock. What happens next is so shocking it will torment Young James for life and it is only his chance encounter with Lancaster decades later that provides the final clue to those terrible events.

The Yalda Crossing takes this little-known episode in Australia’s first-contact history and creates from it a gripping adventure about the desparate battle for land and its dreadful consequences, which live on to this day.

Details
Noel Beddoe, author of The Yalda Crossing, and On Cringila Hill
Photo by Dylan Robinson

Noel Beddoe

Noel Beddoe worked as a high school principal for twenty years and has been involved in Aboriginal education for most of his adult life, becoming the inaugural chairperson of the Aboriginal Education Reference Group. His published works include five books of fiction for teenagers, the adult novel Autumn, the personal memoir Dad and Me, which was included in the anthology Fathers in Writing, as well as short fiction, poetry and journalism. Noel lived and worked in education for twelve years in Narrandera, a township in the Riverina country of New South Wales. He now lives with his wife on the New South Wales south coast.