Two decades after a massacre of local Aboriginal people, the former residents of a Queensland town have reunited to celebrate the progress and prosperity of their community. Tom Dorahy, returning to his hometown, is having none of it: he wants those responsible to own up to their actions. A reckoning with oppression, guilt and the weight of the past, A Kindness Cup is one of Thea Astley's greatest achievements.
Thea Beatrice May Astley was born in Brisbane in 1925. In 1958 Astley's first novel, Girl with a Monkey, was published. Over the next four decades she published a work of fiction every few years. Her novels and short stories are distinguished by vivid imagery and metaphor; a complex, ironic style; and a desire to highlight oppression and social injustice.Astley won the Miles Franklin Literary Award for The Well Dressed Explorer (1962), her third novel. Many notable books followed, among them the groundbreaking A Kindness Cup (1974), which addressed frontier massacres of Indigenous Australians, and It's Raining in Mango (1987).Astley won the 1989 Patrick White Award and became an Officer in the Order of Australia in 1992. Her last novel was Drylands (1999), her fourth Miles Franklin winner and first since 1972.A lifelong chain-smoker famed for her sharp wit, Thea Astley died in 2004. She remains one of the most distinctive and influential Australian novelists of the twentieth century.