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by author "Kate Grenville" in All Categories
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The Restless Life of Dolly Russell, an Audible Original
Length: 3 hrs and 3 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Always Greener is an exquisite portrait of Kate Grenville's complex, conflicted grandmother, who she feared as a child and only in adulthood came to understand. Born in rural Australia, Dolly Russell becomes a successful businessperson, mother and troubled wife. Then came the depression, bankruptcy and World War I. Yet, in a way, those disasters freed her. They allowed her to use her intelligence and ambition to make a space for herself in a man’s world.
In 1806 William Thornhill, a man of quick temper and deep feelings, is transported from the slums of London to New South Wales for the term of his natural life. With his wife, Sal, and their children he arrives in a harsh land he cannot understand. But the colony can turn a convict into a free man. Eight years later Thornhill sails up the Hawkesbury to claim 100 acres for himself. Aboriginal people already live on that river. And other recent arrivals - Thomas Blackwood, Smasher Sullivan, and Mrs Herring - are finding their own ways to respond to them.
What if Elizabeth Macarthur – wife of the notorious John Macarthur, wool baron in early Sydney – had written a shockingly frank secret memoir? In her introduction Kate Grenville tells, tongue firmly in cheek, of discovering a long-hidden box containing that memoir. What follows is a playful dance of possibilities between the real and the invented. Grenville's Elizabeth Macarthur is a passionate woman managing her complicated life-marriage to a ruthless bully, the impulses of her own heart and the search for power in a society that gave her none - with spirit, cunning and sly wit.
Nance was a week short of her sixth birthday when she and Frank were roused out of bed in the dark and lifted into the buggy, squashed in with bedding, the cooking pots rattling around in the back, and her mother shouting back towards the house, 'Good-bye, Rothsay, I hope I never see you again!' When Kate Grenville’s mother died, she left behind many fragments of memoir. These were the starting point for One Life, the story of a woman whose life spanned a century of tumult and change.
Set in the eccentric backwater of Karakarook (pop. 1,374), New South Wales, this is the story of Douglas Cheeseman, a shy and clumsy engineer with jug-ears who meets Harley Savage, a woman who is known for being rather large and abrupt. Douglas is there to pull down a quaint old bridge, and Harley aims to foster heritage. They are clearly on a collision course - but when they meet they are unaware that something unexpected is going to happen....
Kate Grenville had always associated perfume with elegance and beauty. Then the headaches started. Like perhaps a quarter of the population, Grenville reacts badly to the artificial fragrances around us: other people’s perfumes and all those scented cosmetics, cleaning products and air fresheners.
In 1787 Lieutenant Thomas Rooke sets sail from Portsmouth with the First Fleet and its cargo of convicts, destined for New South Wales. As a young officer and a man of science, the shy and quiet Rooke is full of anticipation about the natural wonders he might discover in this strange land on the other side of the world. After the fleet arrives in Port Jackson, Rooke sets up camp on a rocky and isolated point, and starts his work of astronomy and navigation.
Sarah Thornhill is the youngest child of William Thornhill, convict-turned-landowner on the Hawkesbury River. Her stepmother calls her wilful, but handsome Jack Langland loves her and she loves him. 'Me and Jack', she thinks. 'How could it go wrong?' But there's an ugly secret in Sarah's family. That secret takes her into the darkness of the past, and across the ocean to the wild coasts of New Zealand.