‘It’s hard to tell, hard to say, I don't know if the bush babies found me or I found the little creatures.’
May Gibbs’ stories reveal magic in the Australian bush, woven through the voices of her unique and curious characters and through her imagery and humour. It is a magic that continues to captivate generations of Australians.
In this fascinatingly detailed and well researched biography, Maureen Walsh steps into May Gibbs’ magic circle and gives us an insight into one of Australia's most treasured children’s authors.
Commencing with May's birth in middle class London, Maureen details the family's struggles upon their arrival in an unfamiliar land. While their initial encounters of the harsh Australian outback were daunting, a move to Perth brings happier times and leads to May's affinity with the bush. May Gibbs' lively spirit is brought to life with interviews, notes from May's sketchbooks and quotes from her letters and autobiographical notes.
This book is a commitment to the story of May Gibbs and, with the help of those who care for our Australian stories and bush magic, is keeping the memory of May and her characters alive.
Maureen Walsh is a writer, director, producer and editor who has worked in the motion picture industry in North America and Australia.
Introduction: mother of the gumnuts
- The Gibbs and Rogers families
- Failure at Franklin
- The Harvey
- The family in Perth
- England revisited
- The illustrator
- Running away
- ‘We are the gumnut Corps’
- ‘Getting far too flash’
- Further adventures
- A new publisher
- Cartoonist and columnist
- Mrs Kelly
- Lean years
- Business as usual
- Scotties, bears and a dande lion
- Very much alive
Two unpublished short stories: ‘Spotlights on George and Mrs George’ and ‘Kitty’s Ankles’
Very little small old book
Appendix: published material
May Gibbs’ legacy to children and adults with disabilities
An interview with May Gibbs
Size: 210 × 148 × 11 mm
22 b&w illustrations
Publication: 01 Mar 2007