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In the tradition of Atonement and Birdsong, the Durance sisters leave Australia to nurse on the front during WWI and discover a world beyond their imaginings.
A saga dedicated to the labours of Australian nurses in the Great War
The latest historical offering from the author of Schindler’s Ark
Naomi and Sally Durance are daughters of a dairy farmer from the Macleay Valley. Bound together in complicity by what they consider a crime, when the Great War begins in 1914 they hope to submerge their guilt by leaving for Europe to nurse the tides of young wounded.
Their education in medicine, valour and human degradation takes them from the Dardanelles to the Greek island of Lemnos, then on the Western Front. Naomi encounters the wonderful, eccentric Lady Tarlton, who is founding a voluntary hospital near Boulogne; Sally serves in a casualty clearing station close to the front.
Inspired by the journals of Australian nurses who gave their all to the Great War effort and the men they nursed, The Daughters of Mars is vast in scope yet extraordinarily intimate.