I hate being here. I feel lonely. I miss Baba and Mama, and I feel not worthy because I cannot earn enough gold to send back to China and I can’t pay respects to Baba at his grave.
Shu Cheong came to Australia with his father and Third Uncle in search of gold and a new life for their family back home. But now Father and Third Uncle are dead and Shu Cheong is in the care of a new uncle who is not really his uncle at all. They are living and working on the goldfields at Lambing Flat.
Life is hard for all of the gold miners, but particularly so for the Chinese, who have to face the increasing hostility of the white miners. Shu Cheong shares his day to day life and his community’s battle for a fair go, through first person diary entries.
This is a story of hardship, but also about hope, as author Christopher Cheng shares a sad, but important tale of a part of Australian history with which most children would not be familiar. Part of the My Australian Story collection, this hardback offering is suitable for private reading, but would also make an outstanding addition to classroom or library collections.
My Australian Story: New Gold Mountain, by Christopher W. Cheng
Scholastic Press, 2005