For Educators, For Readers 5 years ago

Debut Australian author Jannali Jones pens stunning first release out August 1

 My Father’s Shadow is a riveting, unputdownable YA thriller. I rarely say this, but I simply couldn’t stop reading it. High praise, particularly since this is Jannali’s debut novel. Joy Lawn, Paperbark Words

Jones’s debut is a fast-paced, gripping read that keeps you turning the pages with expectation. With each revelation, new questions appear and as the story unfolds it still holds surprises right until its conclusion… I can’t recommend this book highly enough and I can’t wait to see what Jones produces next.” Jess Gately, Underground Writers Blog

“Set amongst the mountains, My Father’s Shadow pulses with the drama and thrill of the landscape and its characters in this addictive YA mystery. Believe me when I say Kaya’s story is one you won’t be able to put down!” Eugenia Alabasinis, Genie in a Book

Emerging Australian author Jannali Jones has penned a stunning debut Young Adult novel due out August 1 called My Father’s Shadow, an edgy thriller that promises to keep readers on the edge of their seats.

My Father’s Shadow is about 17-year-old Kaya who is woken in the middle of the night by her mother in the midst of completing her Higher School Certificate. They are to pack immediately and go to their holiday home in the Blue Mountains. Her father is ‘not coming back’. He has been involved in a court case to give evidence against some dangerous criminals. Months later, they are still in hiding and the mysteries are multiplying. She is also recovering from memory loss caused by PTSD after a chilling encounter with the criminals and is seeing a psychologist to try and recall the evidence she might have to give in a forthcoming trial. Her best friend, Jemma, has gone overseas and Kaya is trying to make sense of what is really happening.

Based on the manuscript for the book, Jones won the black&write! Indigenous Writing Fellowship in 2015, run by the State Library of QLD promoting works of Indigenous writers in partnership with Magabala Books, who edited and published Jannali’s debut.

Jones started writing at the age of seven when she found a love of writing inspired by reading. She has had short stories and poetry published in literary magazines and has already won a slew of awards and scholarships in addition to her win at black&write! including a Magabala Australian Indigenous Creator Scholarship for her next book-in-progress, which was also shortlisted for the 2019 Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing.

Jones’ main protagonist is a young Aboriginal woman. As a Krowathunkoolong woman of the Gunai nation, Jones is excited and passionate about her contribution to Indigenous literature in Australia.

“The stories Indigenous authors tell are so important. It increases visibility of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, of our heritage, culture and history, and our dreams and hopes for the future. By sharing our stories, we are helping to build understanding with non-Indigenous people, to challenge stereotypes about who Indigenous people are and what our everyday lives look like.”

We are also a creative people, having practised dance, song, art and told stories for thousands of years. Indigenous literature is a continuation of that tradition that should be embraced by all Australians,” says Jones.

My Father’s Shadow is now available for pre-order from all good bookshops and online retailers. The book is on shelves from August 1.

A complete list of Jannali’s other awards can be found at

About the author

Jannali Jones is a Krowathunkoolong woman of the Gunai nation. She holds a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Technology, Sydney. Jannali was a winner of the 2015 black&write! Indigenous Writing Fellowship and an inaugural recipient of Magabala’s Australian Indigenous Creative Scholarship. Her stories have been published in literary journals in Australia and overseas, including Overland, Southerly, the Review of Australian Fiction and Westerly. When not writing, Jannali enjoys spending time with family, video gaming, going to the movies and reading.






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