The Trespassers, the second novel by Meg Mundell, the Melbourne-based author of Black Glass (Scribe, 2011), has been acquired by Aviva Tuffield at the University of Queensland Press after what literary agent Martin Shaw from Alex Adsett Publishing Services describes as “a spirited contest” between three rival publishers.
Scheduled for publication in mid-2019, Shaw describes it as “a gorgeously written, compelling literary thriller brimming with guts, intelligence and heart”. Inspired by the true story of the Ticonderoga, a ‘fever ship’ full of migrant UK workers that reached Melbourne in 1852, sparking the creation of Australia’s first quarantine station, the novel is set 200 years after this landmark event, and taps into contemporary tensions around migration, climate change, and the future of work.
UQP’s Tuffield remarked: “I am so thrilled to be working with Meg Mundell on her beautifully written and thought-provoking second novel. The Trespassers is a literary page-turner set in the near future on an emigrant ship, told from the perspective of three passengers. This is a novel for our times – dealing as it does with emigration, asylum seeking, and global displacement due to climate change; it is engrossing, compassionate and profound. I can’t wait to share Meg’s impressive new work with readers”.