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NEWLAND, SIMPSON. - Blood Tracks of the Bush.

London, Gay & Bird 1900. Octavo publisher's red cloth. Sixteen page publisher's list dated January 1900 at the end. Some light spotting at the beginning; a nice, bright copy. ¶ First edition. We begin, as we must, on an English country estate with an unscrupulous debt-ridden squire directing his equally unscrupulous son to take his young ward's inheritance, make his fortune in the colonies and save the family home. Scene change to Wilcannia and no-one behaves any better. It's a well filled novel, plenty of murder and robbery, false identity, a dash of lost race fantasy when the last survivor of the Leichhardt romp is discovered and points our hero west into the setting sun to rediscover, under the snow capped mountain, the mysterious chamber filled with gold. And - most notable - graphic accounts of the massacre of Aborigines foolish enough to cause trouble. Not much mercy here. I don't think it's giving too much away that the only protaganist left standing at the end of the book is the noble and loyal young ward and she's badly scarred. Trove locates only two copies of this first edition - the Bell colonial edition is a bit more plentiful - and OCLC and Copac add few copies outside the four British deposit libraries.
AUD 850.00 [Appr.: EURO 543.5 US$ 613.74 | £UK 472 | JP¥ 69910] Book number 9556

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