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This extraordinary story of courage and faith is based on the actual experiences of three girls who fled from the repressive life of Moore River Native Settlement, following along the rabbit-proof fence back to their homelands. Assimilationist policy dictated that these girls be taken from their kin and their homes in order to be made white. Settlement life was unbearable with its chains and padlocks, barred windows, hard cold beds, and horrible food. Solitary confinement was doled out as regular punishment. The girls were not even allowed to speak their language. Of all the journeys made since white people set foot on Australian soil, the journey made by these girls born of Aboriginal mothers and white fathers speaks something to everyone.

Published: University of Queensland Press an imprint of Independent Publishers Group on
ISBN: 9780702252051
List price: $12.99
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Praise God. This is an amazing book! It's full of adventure and reality.more
The story -- three aboriginal girls who escape from a government settlement and make their way home -- is interesting and exciting. Sadly, the writing is poor; the grammar is iffy and Pilkington isn't very good at crafting the story or at working background details into the main narrative.more
This is the true story of three bi-racial girls who were taken from their families by the Australian government in 1930 and relocated to an Aboriginal "settlement" half a continent away, and of their daring escape and return to their families.This was not a great book, but it was interesting enough.more
This is a true and sad story of times past, about a rather shameful era in Australian history. Of course similar stories has been told from all parts over the world were the white man has come to make his demands. This rather short story gives the reader some background, some knowledge of the aboriginal way of living and the story of the three sisters. It was interesting to read it but it never got me hooked. I can understand those writing that they liked the movie better because the book is frankly a bit boring. I felt that the book is nothing more than the retelling of this event, which is a good thing because it needed to be told, but it does´t have the qualities of a good novel.more
This is a quite interesting book that contains a lot of rules about races and details about the race descriminations. For me, i hate descriminations.Wether rich or not, people have their own rights to have what they want and enjoy what others can enjoy. Freedom is still a big problem that didn't solve nowadays. Also, i was impressed by the little girls in the story, they are really brave....more
A true story and an important story, but unfortunately very poorly written. As narrative non-fiction it just doesn't work. The author tries to stick too closely to the bits and pieces of details remembered by the protagonists after a period of 50+ years without giving thought to the narrative effect and the 'story' for the reader. Factual historical information, while giving authenticity, is inserted in such a clunky way. And we are not given the girl's story and that of the trek until quite late in the book; after an initial lesson from "invasion history 101". The author is Molly's daughter and is clearly too emotionally close to not only the immediate story, but having suffered the same fate herself, also to the whole issue of the stolen generations. Emotive and biased language is used too readily, giving the impression of an obvious political aim (even if not intended); whereas some distance and more balance would actually have served her better in portraying this atrocious policy and truly shameful period in Australia's history.On the other hand, more fictionalisation, better editing and less effort at including historical research verbatim would have made for a more powerful retelling of her mother's amazing story.more
An interesting and inspiring account of survival and determination. I really enjoyed the author's mixing of traditional aboriginal words and English in recounting the story, especially when the the runaways are speaking with each other. One disappointment was that the description of the actual trek starts relatively late in the book. I enjoyed reading R-PF, but I'd have to say that I expected a better read given the power of the subject matter. Still, it sheds some light on an important time in Australian and English history and is certainly worth the time.more
Themes: freedom, race, civilization, family, traditionSetting: Australia 1931It's a familiar story. The white colonizers decide that for their own good, native children must be taught to be more like their white fathers rather than their Aborigine mothers, so they take the children away from their families, from everyone and everything they've ever known, and lock them up in a school to teach them to read and write. For their own good. The children will be locked into a school with bars on the windows and locks on their doors, given just enough food to keep them alive, and threatened with beating if they try to escape. The government were sure that these half-caste children must be saved from going native.But not everyone is willing to submit. Molly, age 16, and her half siblings, Gracie and Daisy, are taken to the resettlement school from their home. It's their first trip in a car, on a train, and then even on a boat. Molly decides she's not about to stay and she and her sisters set off on their own to get back home.Along the way they meet other aborigines who help them by giving them meat and matches, capture their own food from time to time, and even beg from farmhouses along the way. The white farmers always report them to the police, who are looking for the children, but the girls stay one step ahead. They make it to safety, having traveled 1000 miles on foot.This is a true story, written by the daughter of one of the girls, but it reads more like fiction. It's not really especially well written, but the story itself is amazing, even more so since it is all true. 4 starsmore
When I read the story, I can't believe it was true story. They were only children. If I were them, I couldn't do anything, and think escaping from the place where they were arrested. I learned strength of feeling against their family.more
This book is very sad. But I think, this makes everyone who read it be moved. Morry was strong and brave. Although their goal was too far to attain, they could! Bonds of family was very very strong.more
This is the true story of how three girls, Molly, Daisy, and Gracie, escaped from a residential school designed to turn half-white Aboriginal children into servants for white families and walked 1600 km back to their home.It's a good story and I enjoyed learning more about Australian history, but I found the writing style sort of hard to get into. It's neither a novel nor a straight historical account, but a mix of both, and that didn't really work for me. There would be bits written in a very fictional tone, including thoughts from characters the author couldn't have known the thoughts of, and then you'd hit a big section with excerpts of historical documents, complete with citations.Still, I enjoyed it (and it helped that it was quite short) and would definitely recommend it.I'm curious to see the movie and see how it compares with the book.more
A short and wonderful gem of a book.more
For some reason, the white government in Australia decided that half-caste aboriginal children shouldn't be raised by their parents and would be better off living in camps in order to be trained as domestic servants. This is the story of Molly, Gracie and Daisy who escape from captivity and follow the rabbit-proof fence thousands of miles home to their families.I actually liked the movie version of this book better, most probably because in order to make a good movie they had to flesh out the story. This thin volume is a very straightforward retelling of their arduous journey, but it lacks somewhat in the detail department.The story is a little dry, as it is told in a very no nonsense aboriginal manner, without the kind of examination of motivations or background information that western readers are accustomed to having.more
Taken from their families to be raised by white Australian settlers as part of a new political policy, Rabbit Proof Fence tells the story of three girls who run away from their new home in a resettlement compound and trace their way back to their families through the Australian outback. This is a touching and very personal account of a period of history which is rarely discussed. I found the description of life within the girls' compound to be particularly revealing.more
Read all 14 reviews

Reviews

Praise God. This is an amazing book! It's full of adventure and reality.more
The story -- three aboriginal girls who escape from a government settlement and make their way home -- is interesting and exciting. Sadly, the writing is poor; the grammar is iffy and Pilkington isn't very good at crafting the story or at working background details into the main narrative.more
This is the true story of three bi-racial girls who were taken from their families by the Australian government in 1930 and relocated to an Aboriginal "settlement" half a continent away, and of their daring escape and return to their families.This was not a great book, but it was interesting enough.more
This is a true and sad story of times past, about a rather shameful era in Australian history. Of course similar stories has been told from all parts over the world were the white man has come to make his demands. This rather short story gives the reader some background, some knowledge of the aboriginal way of living and the story of the three sisters. It was interesting to read it but it never got me hooked. I can understand those writing that they liked the movie better because the book is frankly a bit boring. I felt that the book is nothing more than the retelling of this event, which is a good thing because it needed to be told, but it does´t have the qualities of a good novel.more
This is a quite interesting book that contains a lot of rules about races and details about the race descriminations. For me, i hate descriminations.Wether rich or not, people have their own rights to have what they want and enjoy what others can enjoy. Freedom is still a big problem that didn't solve nowadays. Also, i was impressed by the little girls in the story, they are really brave....more
A true story and an important story, but unfortunately very poorly written. As narrative non-fiction it just doesn't work. The author tries to stick too closely to the bits and pieces of details remembered by the protagonists after a period of 50+ years without giving thought to the narrative effect and the 'story' for the reader. Factual historical information, while giving authenticity, is inserted in such a clunky way. And we are not given the girl's story and that of the trek until quite late in the book; after an initial lesson from "invasion history 101". The author is Molly's daughter and is clearly too emotionally close to not only the immediate story, but having suffered the same fate herself, also to the whole issue of the stolen generations. Emotive and biased language is used too readily, giving the impression of an obvious political aim (even if not intended); whereas some distance and more balance would actually have served her better in portraying this atrocious policy and truly shameful period in Australia's history.On the other hand, more fictionalisation, better editing and less effort at including historical research verbatim would have made for a more powerful retelling of her mother's amazing story.more
An interesting and inspiring account of survival and determination. I really enjoyed the author's mixing of traditional aboriginal words and English in recounting the story, especially when the the runaways are speaking with each other. One disappointment was that the description of the actual trek starts relatively late in the book. I enjoyed reading R-PF, but I'd have to say that I expected a better read given the power of the subject matter. Still, it sheds some light on an important time in Australian and English history and is certainly worth the time.more
Themes: freedom, race, civilization, family, traditionSetting: Australia 1931It's a familiar story. The white colonizers decide that for their own good, native children must be taught to be more like their white fathers rather than their Aborigine mothers, so they take the children away from their families, from everyone and everything they've ever known, and lock them up in a school to teach them to read and write. For their own good. The children will be locked into a school with bars on the windows and locks on their doors, given just enough food to keep them alive, and threatened with beating if they try to escape. The government were sure that these half-caste children must be saved from going native.But not everyone is willing to submit. Molly, age 16, and her half siblings, Gracie and Daisy, are taken to the resettlement school from their home. It's their first trip in a car, on a train, and then even on a boat. Molly decides she's not about to stay and she and her sisters set off on their own to get back home.Along the way they meet other aborigines who help them by giving them meat and matches, capture their own food from time to time, and even beg from farmhouses along the way. The white farmers always report them to the police, who are looking for the children, but the girls stay one step ahead. They make it to safety, having traveled 1000 miles on foot.This is a true story, written by the daughter of one of the girls, but it reads more like fiction. It's not really especially well written, but the story itself is amazing, even more so since it is all true. 4 starsmore
When I read the story, I can't believe it was true story. They were only children. If I were them, I couldn't do anything, and think escaping from the place where they were arrested. I learned strength of feeling against their family.more
This book is very sad. But I think, this makes everyone who read it be moved. Morry was strong and brave. Although their goal was too far to attain, they could! Bonds of family was very very strong.more
This is the true story of how three girls, Molly, Daisy, and Gracie, escaped from a residential school designed to turn half-white Aboriginal children into servants for white families and walked 1600 km back to their home.It's a good story and I enjoyed learning more about Australian history, but I found the writing style sort of hard to get into. It's neither a novel nor a straight historical account, but a mix of both, and that didn't really work for me. There would be bits written in a very fictional tone, including thoughts from characters the author couldn't have known the thoughts of, and then you'd hit a big section with excerpts of historical documents, complete with citations.Still, I enjoyed it (and it helped that it was quite short) and would definitely recommend it.I'm curious to see the movie and see how it compares with the book.more
A short and wonderful gem of a book.more
For some reason, the white government in Australia decided that half-caste aboriginal children shouldn't be raised by their parents and would be better off living in camps in order to be trained as domestic servants. This is the story of Molly, Gracie and Daisy who escape from captivity and follow the rabbit-proof fence thousands of miles home to their families.I actually liked the movie version of this book better, most probably because in order to make a good movie they had to flesh out the story. This thin volume is a very straightforward retelling of their arduous journey, but it lacks somewhat in the detail department.The story is a little dry, as it is told in a very no nonsense aboriginal manner, without the kind of examination of motivations or background information that western readers are accustomed to having.more
Taken from their families to be raised by white Australian settlers as part of a new political policy, Rabbit Proof Fence tells the story of three girls who run away from their new home in a resettlement compound and trace their way back to their families through the Australian outback. This is a touching and very personal account of a period of history which is rarely discussed. I found the description of life within the girls' compound to be particularly revealing.more
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