Born into a life of privilege, Charlotte Atkinson was raised by her widowed mother on a vast estate near Sutton Forest, New South Wales, enjoying an idyllic early childhood in the great stone house still known today as Oldbury. But in the summer of 1836, a violent incident in the Belanglo wilderness set off a chain of events that transformed Charlotte’s existence. Inexplicably, her mother was prompted to marry again, thereby surrendering her property, fortune and offspring to Charlotte’s vicious and degenerate new stepfather, George Barton. His presence turned Oldbury into a place of madness and terror, casting a shadow so long that it continued to haunt Charlotte for years after his mysterious death. Based on the true story of a colonial family, this compelling tale features a memorable cast of characters, including Australia’s first female novelist and one of the country’s earliest, most notorious serial killers.
‘Based on a true story, the plot flows easily over the years, bringing the time, place and people brilliantly to life.’
‘With finely drawn characters, poignant relationships and a dramatic, moody backdrop, The Dark Mountain cements Jinks’s reputation as one of Australia’s great storytellers.’
The Sunday Telegraph
‘Fast-paced, emotional, frightening and full of detail, it’s history made as entertaining and as gripping as a night at the movies.’
The Australian Women’s Weekly
‘A great big hulk of a book that, given its definite page-turner status, nonetheless goes by very quickly … An engrossing read.’
Bookseller and Publisher