Songlines: First Knowledges for Younger Readers

Margo Neale, Lynne Kelly, Blak Douglas (illus.)

Songlines: First Knowledges for Younger Readers
Thames and Hudson (Australia) Pty Ltd
26 September 2023

Songlines: First Knowledges for Younger Readers

Margo Neale, Lynne Kelly, Blak Douglas (illus.)

How do you find your way around, get your food and drink, connect with your friends and family? How do you know the right and safe way to do things, or how to make things? Before the white people came to the continent, all Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples knew how to do all these things - and much, much more.

Margo Ngawa Neale and Lynne Kelly invite you on a journey through the oldest, biggest library of knowledge on Earth. This knowledge isn't held in books: you will find it in Songlines of the land, sea and sky.

Learn about history, art, song, science and more in this engaging and inviting introduction to Indigenous traditional knowledges, how they apply today and how they can help all people thrive into the future.


Margo Neale and Lynne Kelly are masterful storytellers and communicators – if you’ve already read the adult edition of Songlines, you’ll already understand exactly why and how. I’m delighted people who may be too young for the adult First Knowledges series now get the chance to enjoy the skill of these women, who are so good at their craft, in the First Knowledges for Younger Readers series.

Neale and Kelly show their young readers how songlines have helped the First Peoples of Australia share valuable knowledge across the land and through time. They begin with explaining what songlines are. Songlines are an ancient internet – a superhighway of knowledge and entertainment. Songlines helped people know which food was safe to eat, they tell stories of volcanoes and star constellations, and of the Olympics! Songlines are not just ways of recording the past, they also make it possible to tell the future all the important things to know about the present. It’s a lot of information to pass on!

Fortunately, Kelly does an excellent job of showing how even though 65,000 years ago Aboriginal people weren’t likely to know what the ‘hippocampus’ was, they knew enough about the human brain to know it’s not going to remember anything boring and it loves repetition. She breaks down the science behind remembering vast numbers of Songs, and even shows the reader how they can do the same.

Songlines is a fantastic and endlessly interesting book for all kids 8+.

This item is in-stock at 9 shops and will ship in 3-4 days

Our stock data is updated periodically, and availability may change throughout the day for in-demand items. Please call the relevant shop for the most current stock information. Prices are subject to change without notice.

Sign in or become a Readings Member to add this title to a wishlist.