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Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray


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About the Author

Dr Anita Heiss is an award-winning author of non-fiction, historical fiction, commercial women's fiction, children's novels and blogs. She is a proud member of the Wiradjuri Nation of central New South Wales, an Ambassador for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation, the GO Foundation and Worawa Aboriginal College. Anita is a board member of University of Queensland Press and Circa Contemporary Circus, and is a Professor of Communications at the University of Queensland. As an artist in residence at La Boite Theatre in 2020, Anita began adapting her novel Tiddas (S&S, 2014) for the stage. Her novel Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms (S&S, 2016) set in Cowra during World War II, was the 2020 University of Canberra Book of the Year. Anita enjoys eating chocolate, running and being a 'creative disruptor'.


'There are books you encounter as an adult that you wish you could press into the hands of your younger self. Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray is one of those books - a novel that turns Australia's long-mythologised settler history into a raw and resilient heartsong.' -- Guardian
'A heartfelt story of colonisation and its negative effects ... A powerful and affecting tale of Aboriginal people's identity, community and deep connection to country.' -- Canberra Times
'Heiss fuses fiction with realism, conjuring a resonance still felt in Blak struggle today ... packs heart into every page.' -- Saturday Paper
'Celebrating family, love, and connection to the land, Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray is a profoundly moving showcase of Heiss' skill for crafting stories and relationships ... A novel that is intimate, reflective, and impossible to put down.' -- The AU Review
'A powerful story of family, place and belonging.' -- Kate Grenville, author of A Room Made of Leaves
'Engrossing and wonderful storytelling. I really loved these strong, brave Wiradyuri characters.' -- Melissa Lucashenko, author of Too Much Lip
'A remarkable story of courage and a love of country ... Anita Heiss writes with heart and energy on every page of this novel.' -- Tony Birch, author of The White Girl
'It is a love story, a story of loss, a hopeful story. The river is a guide, but you have to be open to its spiritual lessons.' -- Dr Terri Janke
'Lyrical and tender, Anita Heiss's Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray tells a story of courage, connection and belonging which is both universal and deeply personal, with the river singing through every page. A grand achievement and destined to be read for a long time to come.' -- Meg Keneally, author of Fled and The Wreck.
'Epic storytelling with a deep warmth at its heart ... This story will stay with me forever.' -- Pamela Hart, author of The Charleston Scandal
'The warmest invitation to share the space of landscape and language, recovery and love.' -- Ashley Hay, author of A Hundred Small Lessons
'Anita Heiss is at the height of her storytelling powers in this inspiring, heart-breaking, profound tale.' -- Larissa Behrendt
'The novel flows like the great Murrumbidgee River itself, with powerful undercurrents that sweep the reader along - I feel it's a book that all Australians should read, to try and understand why our colonial past still causes so much pain and grievance.' -- Kate Forsyth, author of The Blue Rose
'Anita Heiss is an incredibly masterful stroyteller; weaving song, language and history into an epic tale of love, loss and belonging ... my favourite of Heiss' novels!' -- Better Read than Dead
'Far more relevant than a library bulging with Greenes and Hemmingways, Heiss's book is as pulsing as the river that runs through it ... A romance, a history lesson, a language study and a rollicking read all in one.' -- Courier Mail

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