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The brand new Stories of Oz edition of Steele Rudd's two Australian classics: On Our Selection and Our New Selection in a 298 page paperback.
Arthur Davis was six years old when he and his brothers and sisters, walking beside a cart piled high with furniture and farm equipment, found themselves at “Shingle Hut” on the Darling Downs. Their father had arrived a few weeks earlier and knocked up a rough slab hut. Before long – through drought, flood and very occasional plenty – the family had swelled to thirteen children.
By the age of twelve Arthur was earning a living ‘picking up’ at a nearby woolshed, and honing his skills as a jockey. After a stint as a drover, with his brother, his mother arranged for him to apply for the civil service. His application was successful and he soon found himself in the ‘foreign’ world of turn-of-the-century Brisbane.
After a few years in the city he missed the bush so much that he began to read everything he could about life in the outback. Eventually, he had a go at writing his own stories. His first sketch of life growing up in his boisterous family, ‘Starting the Selection,’ was published in the Bulletin Magazine in 1895, championed by J.F. Archibald, the catalyst behind so much great Australian literature. ‘On Our Selection’ was published in full by the magazine in 1899, followed by ‘Our New Selection’ in 1903.