Our Australian Girl Series
Key Words: History, Australian Themes, School
Published: 26th June 2013
Reviewer: Kylie Calwell
Ruby is adjusting to a big change. She has come from a wealthy place in the city and now finds herself living with relatives in the country. It is a big adjustment for her. She no longer can have all the things she wants, there just isn’t the money for it. The other thing is her Dad is not around. She is told he is off looking for work. She tries to do the best she can. When a really poor family move into the area and the children start at the school Ruby finds she has some choices to make. She needs to find out if she has the strength to stand up to the horrible Doris Spinks. Just when it looks as though it is as bad as it can be Ruby finds out the truth that her family have been keeping from her.
This is a really interesting take on a very difficult time in Australian (and world history). Ruby’s story is indicative of how many lives were effected by the economic depression. Throughout this adjustment of rich to poor, Ruby finds positive things to hold onto. She brings a light with her and her strength rubs off on those around her. The environment Matthews has created has depth and brings a realness of the moment to the story. If you are looking for something historical, based in truth then this, in fact any book in this series is a good choice. There are many girls and times to choose from and each girl has a story arc of four books. A good way to encourage continual reading.