Jane and Alice Melville are looking for a living wage. Although well qualified with a 'boy's education', neither can find a suitable position. They are disinherited by an uncle who believes that money will turn their heads and make them too independent. Driven to desperation in their struggle to support themselves, eventually they look abroad for new opportunities. But life in the new world has its own problems. First published in 1867, this book adds a personal dimension to an exciting period in Australia's history and reinforces the author's pre-eminent place in Australian literature.
Catherine Helen Spence