Throwback Thursday: Blueback

Throwback Thursday edition is our way of spreading the love of backlist Aussie books that you might have missed. We'll hopefully be posting a new book every second week, and we'd love you to join us!

Kelly's pick

Author: Tim Winton
Released: 1997
Publisher: Penguin Books Australia
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Abel Jackson's boyhood belongs to a vanishing world. On an idyllic stretch of coast whose waters teem with fish, he lives a simple, tough existence. It's just him and his mother in the house at Longboat Bay, but Abel has friends in the sea, particularly the magnificent old groper he meets when diving.

As the years pass, things change, but one thing seems to remain constant: the greed of humans. When the modern world comes to his patch of sea, Abel wonders what can stand in its way.

Blueback is a deceptively simple allegory about a boy who matures through fortitude and who finds wisdom through living in harmony with all forms of life.

why i chose it

Blueback is a beautiful and whimsical story of a boy and his friendship with a Blue Groper affectionately named Blueback. Tim Winton has used Blueback as a symbol of our marine wildlife and how it's paramount to protect our coastline. Although the storyline follows Abel from the age of ten up until he's in his thirties, it's his mother that is the shining example of an environmental warrior.

Throughout Abel's lifetime, his mother has seen illegal poachers who threaten to destroy the Bay by illegal fishing, developers who want to spoil the magic of the serene coastal property, raising a child alone with no support and living off the land to make ends meet. She's a phenomenal role model that should be celebrated. But it's her determination to protect her coast that will resonate with environmentalists worldwide.

With the focus heavily on our environment, climate change and sustainability, Tim Winton writes incredible stories of environment and saving our natural resources set within the Australian landscape.

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