Monday, May 09, 2016

Island Home by Tim Winton review – a love song to Australia and a cry to save it

In his wonderfully honest memoir cum manifesto Tim Winton traces how he came to revere the natural world he grew up in – and long to preserve it

Western Australia
‘Space was my primary inheritance’: gum trees on the floodplain in Western Australia. Photograph: Alamy
Island Home is Tim Winton’s insightful and vibrant testament to what it is to be a non-indigenous Australian living in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Less than 3% of Australia’s population can trace their ancestry in the country to a time that predates photography. Despite up to 60,000 years of continuous human habitation, it is still the landscape that leaves the strongest impression. Australia is “a place where there is more landscape than culture… Everything we do... is still overborne and underwritten by the seething tumult of nature”.

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