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Publisher's Summary

When May’s mother dies suddenly, she and her brother Billy are taken in by Aunty. However, their loss leaves them both searching for their place in a world that doesn’t seem to want them. While Billy takes his own destructive path, May sets out to find her father and her Aboriginal identity.  

Her journey leads her from the Australian east coast to the far north, but it is the people she meets, not the destinations, that teach her what it is to belong.   

Swallow the Air is an unforgettable story of living in a torn world and finding the thread to help sew it back together.  

Winner of the David Unaipon Award for Indigenous Writers.

©2006 Tara June Winch (P)2019 Audible Australia Pty Ltd.

What listeners say about Swallow the Air

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
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Extraordinary

One of the most lyrical descriptions of aboriginal loss and a book all Australians should read. Absolutely beautiful.

5 people found this helpful

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Beautifully written

A finely written description of a young girl's determination to find her people when her less than idyllic life disastrously spirals toward oblivion when her mother succumbs to her own demons and the girl takes a semblance of control ... Shamefully raw and unsavoury truth of Aboriginal displacement and mistreatment, and her attempt to find herself, her place and her people. Altogether a theme unfortunately all too prevalent in Australia.

2 people found this helpful

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Australian brilliance. Masterpiece.

Wow. Just wow! This story took me on a brilliant literary journey of a people and their land.... that i know little about. The characters lay bare the soul of a people robbed of almost everything except kinship. Written perfection. Narrator ...wonderful! . 10/10 Thank you Tara and Temala. SUPERB.

1 person found this helpful

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Gorgeous and moving

A moving portrait of what connects us to each other, to land and a tribute to what it means to be family.

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This woman is a truth poet

Beautifully written & beautifully read. A breath of fresh air in the story world. I am so grateful for this brilliant find & sorry for the truths it spills so eloquently- Thank you Tara June Winch... More please

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Stunningly beautiful...

Intelligent kindness and courage brought to life. Extraordinary writing, words given breath. Makes clear how each and every Aboriginal person, living or passed, is precious to a better understanding of this country and what it means to have the privilege to be here.

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An extraordinary world in my own back yard.

An extraordinarily gifted writer, I inhabited this story’s world in all its discomfort, reverence, sadness, knowledge and humour. What an education. One I recommend to every Australian. I’m deeply grateful for it. Tamara Shelton’s performance made it possible!

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Wow

I thoroughly enjoyed this heart rending story. The words say so much. Thank you.

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Slow and hard to get into.

has some nice moments but I found it a bit slow. it didnt keep me hooked. stopped 30min from the end.

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A beautiful piece of prose

A poignant and tragic story. Brimming with evocative imagery woven through the choice and composition of words. Between the lines, truths are told of the fate of our First Nations people as a result of White colonialism. Yet I was left feeling hope for May Gibson and marveled at hers, and her people's resilience, in spite of it all. Thank you Tara June Winch, I loved it.

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.