Download The Roving Party Audiobook

The Roving Party Audiobook, by Rohan Wilson Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Rohan Wilson Narrator: Shaun Grindell Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2014 ISBN: 9781482968293
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1829, Tasmania. John Batman, ruthless, single-minded; four convicts, the youngest still only a stripling; Gould, a downtrodden farmhand; two free black trackers; and powerful, educated Black Bill, brought up from childhood as a white man—this is the roving party, and their purpose is massacre. With promises of freedom, land grants, and money, each is willing to risk his life for the prize. Passing over many miles of tortured country, the roving party searches for Aborigines, taking few prisoners and killing freely, Batman never abandoning the visceral intensity of his hunt. And all the while, Black Bill pursues his personal quarry, the much-feared warrior Manalargena.

A surprisingly beautiful evocation of horror and brutality, The Roving Party is a meditation on the intricacies of human nature at its most raw.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[An] exceedingly powerful debut. Wilson’s compelling story carries us through forest and over plains, leaving a trail of dead men.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • “One of the best first novels I’ve read all year…The urgency of the chase, carefully chiseled language, exotic characters, and dangerous conflict with each other—it’s all here.”


  • “An extremely skillful book telling a horror story, and the young writer’s maturity takes your breath away…Not for the fainthearted…Wilson writes in spectacularly beautiful prose.”

    Courier Mail (Brisbane)

  • The Roving Party is distinguished by Wilson’s tactful and restrained account of a brutal episode in the history of the conflict between European newcomers and the original inhabitants of Van Diemen’s Land. His restraint renders the horrors he depicts far more vivid and their ethical implications much more telling than other melodramatic, at times tub-thumping, approaches…Evocative and impressive.”

    Sydney Morning Herald

  • “[A] grim and astonishing novel.”

    Australian Book Review

  • “A grim and bloody tone poem that follows the historical figure John Batman and a motley assemblage of men through the Tasmanian bush as they hunt Aborigines in 1829…Wilson gives special, gruesome attention to the massacre of dogs. For neither the faint of heart nor those who prefer strong plots, Wilson’s work will nonetheless gratify fans of more bleak and rugged times.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Australian first-novelist Wilson writes beautifully, equally expert in describing the magical land as he is with Aboriginal dialect.”


  • “Wilson uses this group of morally corrupt men to examine a dark time in the nation’s history.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Danger and uncertainty are evoked in this gritty, masculine tale of racial violence in early-nineteenth-century Tasmania. Shaun Grindell is an excellent narrator. He moves swiftly through a complex cast of male characters, distinguishing one from another through changes in pitch, diction, and tone. The raspy quality of Grindell’s voice suggests the harsh realities of life in the wilderness. He is most successful at dialogue, capturing the wide range of accents among the main characters and differentiating the white pursuers from their native prey. Those who enjoy literary tales in audio will find much to admire in this volume. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award.”


  • Winner of the 2011 Australian/Vogel Literary Award
  • Shortlisted for the 2011 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Fiction
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

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About the Author

Rohan Wilson lived a long, mostly lonely life until a lucky turn of events led him to take up a teaching position in Japan, where he met his wife. They have a son who loves books, as all children should. They live in Launceston but don’t know why. Rohan holds degrees and diplomas from the universities of Tasmania, Southern Queensland, and Melbourne. 

About the Narrator

Shaun Grindell, actor and Earphones Award–winning narrator, was born and raised in Southampton, England. His training includes the Calland School of Speech and Drama and the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in London. He has been seen on stage in London and Las Vegas.