Jock Serong

Jock Serong is the author of six novels, and the founding editor of Great Ocean Quarterly. He is a Director of Melbourne’s Wheeler Centre, and writes about the ocean, about conservation and other topics in The Monthly, The Guardian and Surfing World. His latest novel is The Settlement, which concludes his Furneaux trilogy of novels about the European settlement of Bass Strait.

Jock’s website

Instagram @jockserong

The Settlement 

On the windswept point of an island at the edge of Van Diemen’s Land, the Commandant huddles with a small force of white men and women. He has gathered together, under varying degrees of coercion and duress, the last of the Tasmanians, or so he believes. His purpose is to save them—from a number of things, but most pressingly from the murderous intent of the pastoral settlers on their country.

The orphans Whelk and Pipi, fighting for their survival against the malevolent old man they know as the Catechist, watch as almost everything proves resistant to the Commandant’s will. The wind, the spread of disease, the strange black dog that floats in on the prow of a wrecked ship…But above all the chief, the leader of the exiles, before whom the Commandant performs a sordid dance of intimacy and betrayal.

In The Settlement, Jock Serong reimagines in urgent, compelling prose the ill-fated exploits of George Augustus Robinson at the settlement of Wybalenna—a venture whose blinkered, self-interested cruelty might stand for the colonial enterprise itself.

Events at Mansfield Readers and Writers Festival 2023

Panel: Hijacked Histories

Saturday 4 March, 1:30 – 2:30 

Tickets $25 / $20 concession

Panel: The author life

Sunday 5 March, 1:30 – 2:30

Tickets $25 / $20 concession