About the author

Tara June Winch

About the book

Judges' report

The innovative conceit of this work of fiction is Winch’s use of the language of the Wiradjuri people, to both tell the story and to teach language words. The result is a collection of interweaving stories that are revealed at a slow and gentle pace giving the reader the time needed to drop into the narrative.

Winch teaches us about Language with a capital ‘L’ weaving the present urgency of belonging, land rights, mining and climate change, with the stark reminder of the invasion history of pain and loss. The reader experiences an intricate layering of time through narrative explored in Language. This is Language that drives culture, and energy, and brings people back from the brink. It is Language that heals.

The vital importance of this story, as well as being a fabulous read, is that it reminds us that the way forward, the way to healing and reconnection, both for the land and for people, is through the depth of knowledge held within Indigenous languages.

Further reading


‘Wiradjuri writer Tara June Winch is not afraid to play with the form and shape of fiction … Admirers of Kim Scott’s Taboo and Melissa Lucashenko’s Too Much Lip will enjoy Winch’s Aboriginal realism.’ Ellen van Neerven, Australian Book Review.

‘For all its sorrow, this is a big hearted, hopeful book. More hopeful, maybe, than we deserve.’ Miles Allinson, Readings.


Read ‘I had to be manic’: Tara June Winch on her unmissable new novel – and surviving Andrew Bolt by Sian Cain in The Guardian.

Read a short interview with Tara June Winch for a favourite line of her book The Yield.

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