by Katharine Susannah Prichard
genre Literary Fiction
Writing for British publication The Bookman in 1928, John Sleeman declared Working Bullocks to be ‘the high-water mark of Australian literary achievement in the novel so far’.
‘It’s the story of the people of the timber country in the South-West of WA and follows a young man named Red Burke who has a way with horses and bullocks but not people, as he is torn between two women and struggles to make his way in that world.’ So writes Nathan Hobby, Prichard’s biographer on his website. He goes on to lament, ‘Sadly, Working Bullocks is out of print despite being one of Katharine’s finest novels.’
First published in 1926, the Untapped edition brings this fine novel back into circulation. Hobby’s biography of Prichard, The Red Witch, will be released in May, 2022, by Melbourne University Press.
Katharine Susannah Prichard’s novels include The Pioneers (1915) which won the Hodder and Stoughton All Empire Literature Prize for Australasia, Coonardoo (1928), joint winner of The Bulletin Novel Competition, Intimate Strangers (1943) also in the Untapped Collection, and Haxby’s Circus (1930).