Review: The Roving Party

The Roving Party
The Roving Party by Rohan Wilson
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

While the history behind this story is really interesting, and the characters very well-drawn, this book was incredibly frustrating to read. The choice by the publlisher/ author to dispense with dialogue punctuation menat that, for me, the story became disjointed and difficult to read, as I was continually having to reread paragraphs for meaning. It was so disappointing, as the story of Black Bill, an aboriginal man who has chosen to support John Batman in his relentless and bloody pursuit of aborigines for their bounty value, is really interesting. John Batman is portrayed in history as ‘the guy who settled Melbourne’, but there is obviously much more to him than that, and the side stories of the convicts, the aboriginal chieftan Manalargena, Bill’s wife, and Batman’s family, are tasty morsels that you want to learn more about. I’m a fast reader, but this took me days longer than a book of this size would normally take. I recommend it to you for the story, but be prepared to find the reading jerky and disjointed.

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