Review Blog

Dec 10 2019

Yinti: Desert child by Pat Lowe and Jimmy Pike

cover image

Magabala Books, 2019 (c1992). ISBN: 9781925768831.
Highly recommended. Themes: Aboriginal Australians, Indigenous life, Family. In a series of short anecdotal recounts, we follow the early life of the desert child, Yinti, and his family as they love, thrive and explore community life. The simplicity and complexity of the life of the community are revealed as if told by one of the youngest members of the indigenous community. It is gloriously naive, and yet reveals the incredible resilience, bravery and intelligence of the indigenous community living in the Great Sandy Desert of Western Australia. Not until the last few chapters do we have a hint of the influence of the kartiya (non-Aboriginal people).
Based on the early life of Jimmy Pike (who was born in 1940, in the desert country of Western Australia), this is a wonderful book and would make an excellent read-aloud book to share with students as they learn about traditional Aboriginal culture in the 1950s.
The illustrations through the book are exceptionally naive, in a black and white simplicity.
Carolyn Hull

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