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Publisher's Summary

A brutally raw, beautifully written, remarkably brave memoir about family, trauma and, above all, love.  

Social mobility is not a train you get to board after you've scraped together enough for the ticket. You have to build the whole bloody engine, with nothing but a spoon and hand-me-down psychological distress.  

Violence, treachery and cruelty run through the generational veins of Rick Morton's family. A horrific accident thrusts his mother and siblings into a world impossible for them to navigate, a life of poverty and drug addiction. 

One Hundred Years of Dirt is an unflinching memoir in which the mother is a hero who is never rewarded. It is a meditation on the anger and fear of others and an obsession with real and imagined borders. Yet it is also a testimony to the strength of familial love and endurance.

©2018 Rick Morton (P)2019 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

Critic Reviews

"One Hundred Years of Dirt had me spellbound from the get-go. Morton is a crack story teller and his words and stories are infused with genuine compassion. It's a magnificent book, the clarity of it is inspiring." (Christos Tsolakis)

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What listeners say about One Hundred Years of Dirt

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Insightful and beautifully told human story

I loved this book soo much. The resourcefulness and tenacity of a young man and the acknowledgment of his mum is heartwarming and beautifully written. It’s a book that will stay with me for many years as did “boy swallows universe”

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Let's talk about it

what a great revision of the narrator's life. I love hearing how people got to be where they are from where they started, especially if there's an element of familiar.
As a single mum in a country town, surrounded by accepted violence and misunderstood poverty, I have found relief in his story, particularly in reference to how his siblings faired. Timely book, a hard story told with touches of amusement, and loads of honesty.
I have given a copy to my children, in the hope some of our family stories are affirmed.
For a heavy topic, it's a very easy read. Thanks

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Fabulously thought provoking

Funny and poignant. A wonderful look at the generational impacts of poverty, both monetary and emotional.
I laughed and cried (sometimes at the same time. At the gym. Super awkward).
Can’t recommend it highly enough.

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The Cover Fooled Me (sort of)

I read this book blindly with no idea about the author or the subject matter. After the opening chapters that reflected on the Morton family history some interest was sparked. However, from then on each chapter became dedicated to events/periods in his life for example 'coming out', his violent battles with his brother over drug addiction,his own addiction and mental health issues. The book is not really written with any chronological fluency and a lot of what he has to say has been said before. It is however, written with good humour and a lot of gratefulness for his mum who really did it tough.

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Wonderfully written and performed

Rick has written and read a story which was clearly painful for him.
Providing a window into a broad range of Australian culture, class and media.
To have done this without slipping into self pity or self indulgence shows his talent as a writer.

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Brilliant book

I loved this book, it’s one of the best books I’ve ever read. A brilliantly written book that is touching and funny and educational. A privilege to listen to.

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Giving words to thoughts.

Stories like this ought to catalyse deep reflection and change. Ruling elite will strain to ignore it's message, as per usual.

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Utterly exquisite.

Should be required reading for any of the commentate class - the struggle of Rick’s mother to keep her family together. To sheer steel she must be made of. Not least of which to produce the eloquent and self aware young man that is Rick - even if he is an alien.

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brilliant

nailed it. brilliant story, brilliant author and narrator, great messages and things that need to be talked about more.

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Great

I think Rick is a fabulous and relatable writer
Presented beautifully as an audio book

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  • KMV
  • 03-08-2020

Remarkable excavation of a harsh landscape

This may be Rick Morton and his family’s generational story, but I have little doubt that much of what is shared here will resonate with others, albeit in different ways. I found myself immersed, saddened, frustrated, overwhelmed, laughing out loud, and hopeful. One Hundred Years of Dirt excavates many truths, and places them so beautifully and without sentiment in print.

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.