I have wanted to read Carole Wilkinson's Inheritance since it was published in 2018, particularly as it shares some common ground with Crow Country. Both books are upper middle grade time travel stories set in rural Victoria, both dealing with family secrets and crimes committed against the Aboriginal people -- in my book, a murder, in Inheritance, a massacre -- both featuring young female protagonists who make friends with Aboriginal boys to explore the past together. But Carole Wilkinson's spin takes the story in an intriguing direction of its own.

In Inheritance, the ability to travel through time has been passed down through the women of Veronica's family, using a magical handful of stones and a special place (a weak spot in the fabric of space-time). I absolutely love the idea of generations of women criss-crossing through time and the story of Nic's mother was especially surprising (though I did find myself wanting a clearer resolution at the end). I also loved the huge, neglected mansion of Yaratgil which is Nic's more tangible inheritance. After a slow-ish start, the story gathers pace once Nic discovers the mysterious boarded-up Rose Room and cracks the secret to time travel, and it gains immense gravitas with the horrific massacre of the local people around which the plot revolves.

There can never be too many books that help to uncover the shameful, almost forgotten history of the 'settlement' of Victoria, in reality a swift and bloody invasion. This is a terrific story, both enjoyable and uncomfortable, as all the best fiction should be.


  1. Hi Kate! Yes, I enjoyed it very much. And Crow Country was the first thing I thought of. If you’re curious about my opinion, I reviewed it on my blog when it came out.

  2. Great review, Sue! Completely agree. I didn't feel the 'message' was heavy-handed either.

  3. Yes, I agree with you, Kate and Sue. Enjoyable and uncomfortable, and part of a story that just needs to be told. Told AND listened to. Last week I attended a play reading, Soul of a Possum, at the Castlemaine Festival. Written by a young local man, it's about the bloody history of early colonisation along the Murray near Swan Hill. It gave the perspectives of a group of young Indigenous men and the men of the exploring party. It was gripping and I hope it is performed in the future.