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Bone Lands

Pip Fioretti

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English
Affirm Press
26 March 2024

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Gus Hawkins of the Mounted Police is stationed in far west NSW. A Boer War veteran, he is scarred physically and mentally by his war experiences and the police work gives his life structure, if not peace. On the night of King George V's coronation celebrations, when he should be patrolling his stretch (but is instead bedding the local school teacher) three young people are brutally murdered. They are the children of the richest (and nastiest) pastoralist in the district, and they shouldn't have been on that particular road, so there is pressure to find the perpetrators, and Sydney detectives are called in. Gus has had dealings with the Kirkbride family, including a forbidden romance with the last surviving daughter, so it's far too personal a crime for him to leave alone even when the detectives come up with theories the pastoralist is pleased to support… A compelling read, with a main character whose personal demons make him a very interesting study, and a well constructed narrative that catches the vastness of the western plains. Lindy

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'Isn't it your job to stop people being murdered?'1911, on a winter's night in arid New South Wales wool country, mounted trooper Augustus Hawkins discovers the bodies of three young people. They are scions of the richest family in the district, savagely murdered on a road that Hawkins should have been patrolling, had he not been busy bedding the local schoolteacher. Detectives arrive from Sydney and the disgraced Hawkins, a traumatised veteran of the Boer War, comes under fierce scrutiny. With his honour and sanity at stake, he becomes hell-bent on finding the murderer. But as ever darker secrets are revealed about the people he thinks of as friends, Hawkins is forced to confront an uncomfortable question: who is paying the price for the new nation's prosperity?

By:  
Imprint:   Affirm Press
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm, 
Weight:   464g
ISBN:   9781922992864
ISBN 10:   1922992860
Pages:   384
Publication Date:  
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Pip Fioretti lives in Sydney, and enjoys hiking, books, friends and family. Bone Lands is her first crime novel.

Reviews for Bone Lands

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Gus Hawkins of the Mounted Police is stationed in far west NSW. A Boer War veteran, he is scarred physically and mentally by his war experiences and the police work gives his life structure, if not peace. On the night of King George V's coronation celebrations, when he should be patrolling his stretch (but is instead bedding the local school teacher) three young people are brutally murdered. They are the children of the richest (and nastiest) pastoralist in the district, and they shouldn't have been on that particular road, so there is pressure to find the perpetrators, and Sydney detectives are called in. Gus has had dealings with the Kirkbride family, including a forbidden romance with the last surviving daughter, so it's far too personal a crime for him to leave alone even when the detectives come up with theories the pastoralist is pleased to support… A compelling read, with a main character whose personal demons make him a very interesting study, and a well constructed narrative that catches the vastness of the western plains. Lindy





'Bone Lands is incredibly evocative. You can taste the dust and feel the searing heat as Mounted Trooper Hawkins investigates the brutal murder of three settler children. Hawkins is a terrifically authentic character and this is high quality writing - sharp and descriptive - that doesn't flinch or look away.' David Whish-Wilson 'Bone Lands is what you get if Breaker Morant comes home damaged and unmoored, takes a job policing the brutal grandfathers of the unhinged men of Wake in Fright, and collides with the ruthless corruption of money, power and pride. Propulsive, atmospheric and utterly compelling, Bone Lands keeps faith with both the history and its purpose, delivering a cracking yarn that drives to a shocking conclusion. With desperate characters trapped in the irons of a rigid social code, and tormented by unbounded colonial greed like the ruined landscape around them, it's The Unforgiven mixed with Blue Murder and Sunday Too Far Away, dipped in the Iliad, in the register of Blood Meridian.' John Byron


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