The Black Line – A Synopsis
Benjamin Robbins, an orphan brought up in the City of Gloucester, one of 220 convicts transported on the Elisabeth on 3rd October 1831, bound for Van Diemens Land befriends Warren James, leader of the anti-enclosure riots in the Forest of Dean.
The two men from very different backgrounds form a bond that ensures their survival through the hardships of convict life, and their involvement in the Black Wars of Tasmania, where they are saved from starvation by the last desperate survivors of the Pinterrairer Nation and learn the true meaning of kinship.
As the group gradually succumbs to the ravages of disease and genocide, they all come to rely on each other for moral support as the inevitability of their eventual extinction gradually dawns on them.
The story brings the reader slowly, but inexorably to the conclusion that kinship and belief in one’s ancestors is mans true destiny and is as alive and meaningful today as it was in the 19th century.
The Black Line is a work of contemporary speculative fiction, which takes the reader on a 180 year journey to an alternative present, where the events of the past are repeated, with an important message for 21st century readers.