In 1869 Mt Egerton was outraged by the armed hold-up of the local bank by a masked villain calling himself 'Captain Moonlite'. The perpetrator turned out to be the new lay preacher, Andrew George Scott. On his release from prison Moonlite led a ragged bunch of young desperadoes to stage a siege that involved a shoot-out and the death of a policeman.
Author and librarian Jane Smith has a passion for Australian history and bushrangers in particular. With thirteen books on the subject published since 2014, and with titles receiving award nominations in the ABIA and CBCA awards and glowing reviews nationally it appears that Jane’s fascination with Australian history is shared by children, parents and teachers alike!
In 2015 Captain Thunderbolt from her much loved Australian Bushranger series was shortlisted in the 2015 ABIA Awards. Shoot-out from the Rock the first in her new series, Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy, followed suit as a 2017 CBCA Book of the Year notable. The books teach younger readers about the colourful lives of our bushranging legends and the times they lived in. Her meticulous research offers an insight that goes beyond the surface into the personalities of her ‘characters’ and debunks a few well-known myths and ‘facts’ along the way.
Jane’s clever and entertaining series has been written with not only a flare for fun and reader engagement but also with the Australian National Curriculum in mind. The seventh book in the Tommy Bell series was released in February 2019.