Author(s): Christie Nieman
In north-eastern Victoria, bush-covered hills erupt into flames. A Bush Stone-curlew escapes the fire but a woman studying the endangered bird does not. When Robin's parents split up after the fire, her mother drags her from the country to a new life in the ugly city. Robin misses her dog, her best-friend, the cows, trees, creek, bushland and, especially, the birds. On the first day at her new school, Robin meets Delia. She's freaky and definitely not good for Robin's image. Delia's older brother Seth has given up school to prowl the city streets. He is angry at everything, but mostly at the fire that killed his mother. When a Bush Stone-curlew turns up in the city parklands, the three teenagers become inextricably linked. Soon their lives are circling tighter and tighter around each other, and the curlew.
Christie Nieman is a Victorian writer, editor and playwright. She co-edited and contributed to Just Between Us (Pan Macmillan, May 2013) and has had playscripts and fiction published and professionally produced. Her play Call me Komachi, about teenage girls and sponsored relationships in Japan, was nominated for a major Green Room Award and played to sold-out audiences up and down the east coast. She is currently working towards a PhD in Creative Writing and Ecocriticism through La Trobe University, which she will finish if and when she can stop watching birds and animals long enough to write about them.