By the 1700s, the Aborigine had lived in harmony with the land in Australia for 60,000 years. But now ghost-ships are arriving, and their very existence is threatened by a terrifying white invasion. When Jonathan Cadwallader leaves Cornwall to sail on the Endeavour, he is forced to abandon his sweetheart, Susan Penhalligan. But an act of brutality will reunite them in the raw and unforgiving penal colony of New South Wales.
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Following in the pioneering footsteps of the women who have gone before her, Ruby and her new husband James brave a long and treacherous journey to start their new life together. However, they soon discover that there are many more dangers than just those that meet the eye. When James is tempted away by the gold rush, Ruby must join forces with the Aborigine girl Kumali and learn to adapt.
The Aboriginal boy Mandawuy is the last of his tribe. He will face the ultimate choice - join with the white man, or rebel alongside his fellow warriors. George Collinson falls in love with Eloise as soon as he meets her. But Eloise is already married. Nell and Alice's husbands are best friends, but they clash from the very first. But as tragedy threatens, they must overcome their enmity to survive. Niall Logan is one of many Irish children sent to Sydney in chains. Struggling to exist in the cruel world of convict colony.