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The Harp in the South Novels : Penguin Modern Classics Ser. - Ruth Park

The Harp in the South Novels

Penguin Modern Classics Ser.

By: Ruth Park


Published: 2nd March 2009
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Published: 28th June 2010
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Covering a span of over thirty years in the life of the Darcy family, these three iconic novels from Ruth Park take us from first love to hardship via outback Australia and the streets of Surry Hills. In "Missus", we read about the adolescence and courtship of Hughie Darcy and the innocent Margaret in the dirt and dust of rural Australia. We next meet the pair in "The Harp in the South", where they run a flea-bitten boarding house in Surry Hills with their two daughters, Roie and Dolour. Making ends meet is hard in the slums of Sydney, and love is not kind to Roie as she takes her first steps into adulthood. Lastly we watch Dolour grow up all too fast in "Poor Man's Orange", as Hughie and Margaret struggle to keep their relationship alive after so many years together. At times confronting, often affectionate, this is a remarkable portrait of an Australian working-class family of the time.

About the Author

Born in New Zealand, Ruth Park moved to Australia in 1942 to continue her career as a journalist. She has written over fifty books, and her many awards include the prestigious Miles Franklin Award for Swords and Crowns and Rings; the Australian Children's Book of the Year Award and The Boston Globe-Horn Book Award (USA) for Playing Beatie Bow and the Age Book of the Year award for A Fence Around the Cuckoo. She was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1987 and in 1994 was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Letters from the University of New South Wales. Ruth Park lives in Sydney.



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The Harp in the South Novels

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" three for the price of one"


from Sydney

About Me Everyday Reader

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Comments about The Harp in the South Novels:

Our bookclub selected The Harp in the South for our next read. I decided to by this Penguin classic that contains the prequel Missus and the sequel Poor Mans Orange. So glad I did, great read, and despite each novel being great in itself just think getting the full picture just enhances this.


One of my best treasures


from Cairns

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  • Appropriate For School
  • Deserves Multiple Readings
  • Great For Any Age


    Best Uses

    • Travel Reading

    Comments about The Harp in the South Novels:

    Filling my bookkshalves with every book I look forward to reading or re- reading

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    Ruth Park

    Another in a long line of writers born elsewhere yet able to capture Australian life so beautifully, Ruth Park’s writing has had a lasting effect on both adults and children for over 60 years.

    Born in Auckland to a Scottish father and a Swedish mother, Park moved to Australia in 1942 where she had lined up a job with a newspaper.

    Her first novel was The Harp in the South, a graphic story of Irish slum life in Sydney, which has been translated into 37 languages. Even though it was acclaimed by literary critics, the book proved controversial with sections of the public due to its candour. It remains her most popular novel and has never been out of print.

    Between 1946 and 2004, she received numerous awards for her contributions to literature in both Australia and internationally including the Miles Franklin Award for Swords and Crowns and Rings in 1977. She was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1987.

    Ruth Park died in December 2010.

    Visit Ruth Park's Booktopia Author Page

    ISBN: 9780143180159
    ISBN-10: 0143180150
    Series: Penguin Modern Classics Ser.
    Audience: General
    Format: Paperback
    Language: English
    Number Of Pages: 704
    Published: 2nd March 2009
    Publisher: Penguin Books Australia
    Country of Publication: AU
    Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 13.1  x 5.0
    Weight (kg): 0.52
    Edition Number: 1