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Overview

This is the compelling story of how the skull of an Aboriginal man, found on the banks of the Murray River over 40 years ago, came to be returned to his Wamba Wamba descendants. It is a story of awakening, atonement, forgiveness and friendship. 'It is as if a whole window into Indigenous culture has blown open, not just the window, but every door in the house,' says John Danalis. Part history, part detective story, part cultural discovery and emotional journey, this is a book for young and old, showing the ...
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Riding the Black Cockatoo

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Overview

This is the compelling story of how the skull of an Aboriginal man, found on the banks of the Murray River over 40 years ago, came to be returned to his Wamba Wamba descendants. It is a story of awakening, atonement, forgiveness and friendship. 'It is as if a whole window into Indigenous culture has blown open, not just the window, but every door in the house,' says John Danalis. Part history, part detective story, part cultural discovery and emotional journey, this is a book for young and old, showing the transformative and healing power of true reconciliation.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The story is an important one and surely will find widespread classroom use."  —

Booklist

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—While taking a course in Indigenous Writing, 40-year-old Danalis realized that the Aboriginal skull that sat on his family's mantle for years was morally wrong. He takes a hard look at the stereotypes and racism of his childhood and Australia as a whole and his own misconceptions of Native Australian culture and traditions. What follows is his account of first figuring out how and where to return it, and then the bureaucracy involved, the government's horrifying lack of respect for these people, and the appreciation and ceremony on the part of the Native people when it was returned. This memoir strikes the perfect balance between being informative and giving extraordinary insight into Aboriginal culture. The journey to take "Mary" home is long and winding, but it's an eye-opening ride for both writer and reader.—Saleena L. Davidson, South Brunswick Public Library, Monmouth Junction, NJ
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781741763560
  • Publisher: Allen & Unwin Pty., Limited
  • Publication date: 4/1/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 276
  • File size: 701 KB

Meet the Author

John Danalis is a writer, illustrator and designer. He is the author and illustrator of three children's titles, Dog 37 being the most recent. Bath Monster and Uncle Lou's Tattoos are his earlier works. He has illustrated numerous other titles including Licking Lizards, Girl in the Cave and Loku and the Shark Attack. He has also illustrated textbooks.

John began his art practice as a graphic designer and now runs a studio called Peripheral Vision with his partner, acclaimed illustrator Stella Danalis (peripheralvision.com.au). In the last 15 years the studio has won over 100 design and illustration awards. Today, John and Stella specialise in book cover design and their own creative projects.
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