Salt Creek by Lucy Treloar

Salt Creek

Some things collapse slow, and cannot always be rebuilt, and even if a thing can be remade it will never be as it was.Salt Creek, 1855, lies at the far reaches of the remote, beautiful and inhospitable coastal region, the Coorong, in the new province of South Australia. The area, just opened to graziers willing to chance their luck, becomes home to Stanton Finch and his large family, including fifteen-year-old Hester Finch.Once wealthy political ...

Details Salt Creek

TitleSalt Creek
Release DateAug 1st, 2015
PublisherPan Macmillan Australia
Number of pages416 pages
GenreHistorical Fiction, Historical, Cultural, Australia, Fiction

Reviews Salt Creek

  • Amanda Jane
    Salt Creek by Lucy Treloar is a beautifully written novel that almost reads like a song. Treloar superbly intertwines fictional events with factual events set in the 1850's in the rugged and harsh coastal environment of Salt Creek in The Coorong of South Australia.The story is told from the viewpoint of the extremely likeable Hester (Hetty) Finch. In 1855 Hester Finch is 15 and her family are living a comfortable life in Adelaide, they have a lov...
  • Sharon
    This story is set 1855 and takes place in Salt Creek on the Coorong of South Australia. The Finch family is struggling to get through each day as their family business is in financial trouble. Neither Mr or Mrs Finch is coping and it seems that fifteen year old Hester (Hetty) is having to take on more than she should for a fifteen year old. This story is narrated by Hester Finch, who gives us the reader a real understanding of just how hard it wa...
  • ☼♄Jülie 
    Salt Creek by Lucy TreloarWhat a beautiful credible story. I didn't want it to finish, I kept holding on to the thin threads of hope that bound this story together and held me captive to the very last page.I even searched the acknowledgments and the author's bio, in an attempt to find out more, something to hang onto and draw it out just a little bit longer. So reluctant was I to leave it, it almost felt like a betrayal, like I was somehow lettin...
  • PattyMacDotComma
    UPDATED 26 June 2016: I see this is shortlisted for the Miles Franklin award now, and there's a good interview with the author here -★+ (Nov. 2015)I think this could become a classic. I don’t know where to start. I have succumbed to the urge to share several passages, just to give a sense of the author’s unique voice. Long story short, Father Finch (a dreamer and schemer) drags mother...
  • Brenda
    4.5 starsSalt Creek on the Coorong of South Australia was the destination of the Finch family in 1855 – fallen on hard times with their business in Adelaide, Mr Finch and his wife brought their entire family to the ramshackle and isolated property of Salt Creek, thinking to make their fortune and restore their good name. But Mr Finch and his grand ideas continued to fail, leaving him continually deeper in debt…Fifteen year old Hester Finch fo...
  • Dale Harcombe
    4 and a half starsFirstly what a gorgeous cover on this book. I love it when publishing houses get it absolutely right. This is a beautifully written book that evokes the landscape and the times extremely well. Although the novel to starts in Chichester England in 1874, it soon goes back to The Coorong, South Australia in 1855. The story is told from Hester’s point of view as she remembers her first sight of their new home and the despair from ...
  • Elaine
    What an absolutely stunning and exquisitely written book. The story of the Finches, their trials and tribulations at Salt Creek is both poignant and hopeful. There is so much heartbreak and so many heart wrenching moments in this book. Like Hester and Addie, Frank and Tully, I found myself riling against "Papa". A proud and stubborn man who would sacrafice his family for his own needs. This book and Treloar's writing, for me, was very reminiscent...
  • Jenny (Reading Envy)
    I think I would recommend first watching this video to get a sense of who the Ngarrindjeri people are. They are the original people living in the region of South Australia, inhabiting the Coorong and surrounding areas, full of salt marshes and water systems. This novel takes place as settlers are moving in, claiming lands and pushing the Ngarrindjeri people farther inland. The Finch family struggles for survival in their isolated setting, with fa...
  • MaryG2E
    This remarkable piece of historical fiction is narrated by Hester Finch, eldest daughter of Mr and Mrs Finch, formerly of Adelaide, who have arrived in straitened circumstances at an isolated pastoral station in the Coorong area of South Australia in 1855. Her Papa, proud patriarch of his family, is a strong-willed man with poor business sense, whose financial misjudgment has thrown the respectable Finches into debt and poverty. Hester’s Mama, ...
  • Andrea
    From my detailed inspection of its exquisite cover to the very last word of the Acknowledgements, I was totally absorbed in this book.It is 1855 and the Coorong region of South Australia has recently opened up to graziers for the first time. The large Finch family, headed by failed-entrepreneur Papa Finch, arrives at Salt Creek Station to try their luck with cattle.Albert and Fred found sticks as boys always seem to and ran in circles mad as youn...
  • Jennifer (JC-S)
    ‘It is my past come to meet me.’This novel is set in the 1850s, in the Coorong region of South Australia. Salt Creek may be beautiful, but this coastal region is remote from Adelaide and comparatively inhospitable. The land has been opened up to graziers, and this is why the Finch family move there. Stanton Finch has fallen on hard times and hopes to make enough money to repay his debts and return to polite society in Adelaide. His wife never...
  • Trudie
    This is the third book in my survey of this years Miles Franklin shortlist and it wore me out it is so sort of ....earnest. Set in the 1850's in South Australia it tells a fairly straightforward story of the hardships of the Finch family, their struggle with the land and the complex and unfortunate race relations between them and the indigenous Ngarrindjeri people. This is one of those books in which the research feels much more palpable than I w...
  • Michael Livingston
    4.5This is a rich, moving book, capturing the loneliness and struggle of the Australian 'frontier', and the horrors that people wrought while thinking they were doing the right thing. The set-up reminded me a lot of The Secret River: a family, down on their luck, move to a remote part of the colony to try to make a life, inevitably encroaching on the lives of the local Indigenous people. Treloar does as good a job as Grenville at capturing the in...
  • Elise McCune
    Salt Creek, 1855, is situated at the far reaches of the remote, beautiful and inhospitable coastal region, the Coorong, in the new province of South Australia. Stanton Finch has moved his large family there after his business failed in Adelaide. Fifteen-year-old Hester and her siblings enjoy the company of the few travellers that pass along the nearby stock-route. There is young artist, Charles and the Ngarrindjeri people who they have dispossess...
  • Kimbofo
    Lucy Treloar’s Salt Creek is a superb historical novel that tells the story of one family’s attempt to settle — and tame — a remote region on the South Australian coast in the mid-19th century, and the dreadful, heartbreaking repercussions that follow.It is told through the eyes of the eldest daughter, Hester Finch, now a grown woman living in Chichester, England, looking back on her youth. Hester’s voice — well-bred, kindly, intellig...
  • Jan
    Girls gone wild without a mother’s guidanceThis review contains spoilers Women dying far too young, either in childbirth or worn out from having too many children, is regularly visited in stories set anytime before reliable birth control was put in to women’s hands. Even in the 1950s, especially in Catholic families, women’s health suffered through having more children than their bodies could cope with. So it is a familiar scenario in Salt ...
  • Julie Twohig
    First up, I admit that historical fiction is generally not my favourite genre. However, Lucy Treloar’s debut novel Salt Creek was – for me – a much anticipated read. Having studied Professional Writing and Editing at Mebourne’s RMIT with Lucy and subsequently being part of an amazingly talented collective of women writers, I declare my bias in writing this review; everything I’d read by Lucy Treloar had been exquisite.Salt Creek is no e...
  • Calzean
    Hester Finch is the narrator. One of nine children, the eldest daughter of a dreamer who is a failed entrepreneur and religious zealot and in 1855 moves his family to the remote Cooryong to try one more scheme as a farmer.On the surface Papa seems like a nice enough guy. But he is fleeing his failures, his incompetence sets up further failures and his duplicity is evil. Papa sees the whites are there to bring religion to the natives but that they...
  • Betty
    This novel starts out as slow, contemplative, beautiful writing. It builds, until you are hooked and do not want to put it down. It is set in the 1850's in the Coorong in South Australia and explores the early contact between British settlers and the local indigenous people. The narrator, Hester, is engaging and we empathise with her plight, as well as that of the local Aboriginal population. A bit I particularly enjoyed was where Hester is musin...
  • MichelleG
    I absolutely loved this story. I really took my time reading it, there was so much detail and I'm glad I took the time to absorb as much as possible, the book definitely deserves it. Truly a 5 star read (IMO) :)
  • Amanda
    Well - what a cracker of a book!A beautifully told story, brilliantly depicting the unspoiled Coorong in South Australia and the demise of it's original inhabitants in tandem with the demise of an English family who attempt to carve out an existence there. Told in the first person, in the voice of eldest daughter Hester, this compelling novel vividly portrays the struggle and trials of an isolated settler family whose drive to build a life contri...
  • Brona's Books
    4 and half starsOne of my good friends has been raving about Salt Creek for nearly a year now. I knew I would love it - it has all the things I usually look for in a good book.Strong, interesting female protagonist, fascinating setting (Younghusband Peninsula in South Australia), a lovely cover design and historical fiction based loosely on real stories.Hester is the eldest daughter in a large family fallen on hard times thanks to their father's ...
  • Annaleise
    Beautifully written, Treloar has somehow managed to capture the essence of the Australian bush in ways so many other authors just haven't managed to do. Hester was a fantastic heroine, and her story had me enthralled from the very first page. Read this: for a much more likable and enjoyable version of Kate Grenville's Secret River (mind you, that's not to say this book isn't just as sad and miserable in places). There are a lot of similarities, e...
  • Carole Hazell
    I found it quite hard going, particularly the first half of the book. The characters & story did not engage me, although the book is well written and edited. The second half was more interesting, but the chance meeting of Charles & Hugh on Collins Street in Melbourne tied things up rather too neatly. There are many interesting themes in this book, & a number of fascinating historical events. I don't think Treloar has been entirely successful in h...
  • Dash M
    While a few niggly things missed the mark for me, Salt Creek drew me right in. Treloar depicts European settler treatment of the land and Indigenous people in a deceptively subdued way - it is evocative and powerful, watching a terrible tragedy unfold, knowing that worse is coming, despite a deep desire that something could be different.
  • Jenny Esots
    Did not want this to end.Salt Creek is historical fiction at its finest. It is a tale of the first settlers to the remote Coorong region in South Australia. This area has just been opened up to graziers. The Finch family arrives to tame this land. The prevailing belief and sentiment of the first settlers was to hold dominion over the land and all that was on it. It is in this harsh place that fortunes could be won, instead broken dreams come to l...
  • Kim Miller
    A new addition to my list of favourite Australian novels.
  • Rosalie
    Salt Creek is a romantic novel set in the latter half of the 18th century in South Australia and England. It is a beautifully written and well-crafted story with each chapter giving a date and place, almost like a diary, but serving well to keep the reader aware of the lapses of time between accounts as the narrative spans two decades. The Coorong setting is significant as it is magnificent. It is an area of sandy coastal land, with a very long l...