As with my previous novel, Banksia, the new novel, Cave Hill, is about landscape. In Banksia the landscape is entirely imagined with its own topographic and geological maps that are meant to inform the reader as well as elaborate the story. In Cave Hill, the story draws the reader into appreciating the mystery, history and beauty of the Carnarvon Ranges landscape, the country of the Bidjara and Garingbal people, the traditional owners.
My personal and professional interest in Landscape Aesthetics was developed during my MA studies at Griffith University. Modern industrial society tends to wash over and ignore the importance of our connection to landscape in pursuit of economic development at all costs. What a tragedy! Our First Nation people could teach us much about the importance of a spiritual and emotional attachment to homeland. As for protecting the beauty of our coastlines, our forest, mountains and deserts we have a long way to go. How a nation could allow the loss of something as beautiful as the original Lake Peddar in Tasmania is hard to believe, yet we continue to make similar mistakes.