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Creator / Ethel Turner

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Ethel Turner (25 January 1872 – 8 April 1958) was an Australian writer. She is best remembered as the writer of Seven Little Australians.


Her works provide examples of:

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  • Abusive Parents: Captain Woolcot sure does love beating the shit out of his kids with a riding whip, and thinks nothing of packing Judy off to boarding school after she and Pip embarrass him at his barracks. If Judy hadn't been coughing up blood after she runs away and he finds her hiding in a barn, he would have sent her back and not allowed her to come home for Christmas or summer.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Judy in Seven Little Australians is crushed to death by a tree while saving her baby brother's life.
  • Of Corset Hurts: In Seven Little Australians, Meg starts secretly wearing a tight-laced corset in pursuit of fashionable slimness, suffers untold agonies, and eventually faints in the middle of a dinner party.
  • Poisonous Friend: Aldith McCarthy in Seven Little Australians, Meg's friend from French class and the instigator of the above corset incident. She lends Meg women's magazines and encourages her to get into fashion and boys and tighten her corset, makes little digs at her shabby clothes, and goads her into sending a love letter to a boy. The boy's brother - who Meg secretly fancies - gets the letter, and he warns Meg to stay away from Aldith.
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  • Write What You Know: Three Little Maids, about a widowed English mother moving with her young daughters to Australia, is based on Turner's childhood.

The Woolcot series:

  • Seven Little Australians (1894)
  • The Family at Misrule (1895)
  • Little Mother Meg (1902)
  • Judy and Punch (1928)

Other novels:

  • Three Little Maids (1900)
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