(We're Bound For) Botany Bay


Generally I like to read historical/period type novels generally set in Europe somewhere, but in some cases when the characterisation and storytelling has sufficiently irritated me I just want to drop the novel and forget about it. Delete and hide it forever.

Yet in some cases, something is intriguing enough for me to continue, such as wondering how the author could possibly find a way to repair the situation and conclude the novel positively from such a hugely negative situation. I know the formula, generally something huge will blow up, the male protagonist realises how much the female protagonist means to him and eventually goes running after her by some means.

We’ll see if that’s what happens too in this book I picked up for free recently from the iBooks store. You can’t say I’m not learning some writing techniques trends by reading this sort of stuff anyway.

But interestingly while I was reading today, there’s an unexpected reference to Australia in the text that speaks somewhat for what time period this is based:

[...] humming a popular tune as she sewed: "We're Bound for Botany Bay." A song about convicts being transported...

The main protagonist was very much in fear of being ‘transported’. Historically accurate? Who knows? This song does sound familiar as a Australian folk song, yet not quite as though it’s still lost somewhere in the recesses of my memory. Visuals aside, this is the best quality audio I can find:

Or perhaps you’d enjoy this version by Mirusia Louwerse and Andre Rieu. A bit more of a mournful take, which theoretically makes sense given being transported to another country was generally a bad thing - being away from everything you know and all the people you love. But a new beginning and a new start, in a place where they could own and have more than they had in their old life - seems like a better deal for the convicts.