“The saga of the McIvors is nothing less than a grim and supremely entertaining take on colonialism in Australia and the tortured, stained hearts of all its New World cousins. A-.”—Entertainment Weekly
“McGahan scrutinizes his characters without puppetry, and his prose moves with grace, smoothness and a gift for setting.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Absorbing, disturbing, almost gothic, by turns, as McGahan depicts the inextricability of family and the primal hunger for finding and naming home.”—Valerie Miner, The Boston Globe
After his father’s death, young William is cast upon the charity of an unknown great-uncle, John McIvor. The old man was brought up expecting to marry the heiress to Kuran Station—a grand estate in the Australian Outback—only to be disappointed by his rejection and the selling off of the land. He has devoted his life to putting the estate back together and has moved into the once-elegant mansion.
McIvor tries to imbue William with his obsession, but his hold on the land is threatened by laws entitling the Aborigines to reclaim sacred sites. William’s mother desperately wants her son to become John McIvor’s heir, but no one realizes that William is ill and his condition is worsening. The White Earth
won Australia’s Miles Franklin Award for 2005 and was selected as Book of the Year (2004) by The Age
and the The Courier-Mail.