Review of The Anthology of Colonial Australian Romance Fiction, edited by Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver
In 1907, W .R. Charleton gathered a selection of writings in an anthology titled The Red Kangaroo and Other Australian Short Stories. The contributors, Charleton declared, 'are the best-known and most able writers of romance in the Commonwealth'. One hundred and three years later, three stories from that anthology are reprinted in Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver's latest collection of colonial tales, a volume that takes up the concerns Charleton singled out for special comment in the brief preface to the earlier book: "Here are tragedy in the Australian bush, romance on the Australian station, the plunging of horses, the grim out-back loyalty of strong men, while here and there we catch a glimpse of the slim and graceful Australian girl, whose presence gives the inevitable love story to the collection." Whereas The Red Kangaroo perhaps afforded glances only of the lithe Australian girl, this figure is the centre-piece and framing-device of Gelder and Weaver's anthology.
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Cite as: Dalziell, Tanya. ‘Review of The Anthology of Colonial Australian Romance Fiction, edited by Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 26, no. 2, 2011, doi: 10.20314/als.46340f420a.