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Rabbit-Proof Fence: The True Story of One of the Greatest Escapes of All Time

Rabbit-Proof Fence: The True Story of One of the Greatest Escapes of  All Time - Doris Pilkington, Nugi Garimara This is an amazing book about a truly incredible journey by three young girls across Australia. It's not even very long, so there's absolutely no reason for anyone not to read it and find out for themselves. The first couple of chapters, which attempt to summarize the entire history of the children's aboriginal ancestors are the shakiest in the book, so hang on in till you get past them.

I do have a couple of comments on the synopsis given for this edition of the book:

Following an Australian government edict in 1931, black aboriginal children and children of mixed marriages were gathered up by whites and taken to settlements to be assimilated.

I'm not an expert on Australian history, but this book is explicit about the fact that the girls were removed from their families because they were mixed race. Aboriginal children from these girls' communities were not targeted. Actually, the contacts I have had with Australia tend to confirm the idea that mixed race children were particularly at risk of being institutionalized in missions and boarding schools. It would be a shame to overlook this detail of Australia's history.

After regular stays in solitary confinement, the three girls scared and homesick planned and executed a daring escape from the grim camp, with its harsh life of padlocks, barred windows, and hard cold beds.

Either I fail at comprehension, or Molly, Gracie and Daisy, having heard that the school was as described, escaped on their first day. As for planning... Molly basically just walked out and got on with it. She was that kind of young woman.