My great Aunt Juliet was knocked over and killed by a bus when she was eighty-five. The bus was travelling very slowly in the right direction and could hardly have been missed by anyone except Aunt Juliet, who must have been travelling fairly fast in the wrong direction.
Growing up in the 1930s in a grand old home in Sydney's bohemian Kings Cross, Robin Dalton experienced a childhood of curiosity and wonder. Raised by a bevy of idiosyncratic aunts and a revolving door of unconventional houseguests, Dalton recalls a time when children had real adventures in a world not easy but perhaps less complicated than today's.
With a gentle warmth and wicked wit, Robin Dalton brings to life all the colour, glamour and charm of Australian society between the wars. Steeped in nostalgia, Aunts Up the Cross is a delightfully funny memoir of family, childhood and an Australia of yesteryear.
Robin Dalton was born in Sydney, and lived in London from 1946. She was a television performer, an intelligence agent, a literary agent and a film producer (Madame Souzatska starring Shirley Maclaine; Oscar and Lucinda starring Cate Blanchett), as well as an author. Her 1965 account of her childhood in Kings Cross, Aunts up the Cross remains an Australian classic. The previously unpublished My Relations was released in 2015. She died in 2022 at the age of 101.
'Hysterically funny.' Jennifer Byrne
'A hugely energetic gallop, nicely complemented by Dinah Dryhurst's spikey, spirited illustrations...[Dalton] lived a technicolour, quite glorious life, which you'll enjoy being diverted by.' New Zealand Herald
'A quirky and hilarious childhood memoir. I haven't laughed so much in years.' Tim Flannery, The Books We Loved 2016, Sydney Morning Herald