Winner of the 2020 Davitt Award for Best Adult Crime Novel. Shortlisted for the 2020 Voss Literary Prize, an Aurealis Award and the Norma K. Hemming Award. Read reviews of The Trespassers >

Fleeing their pandemic-stricken homelands, a shipload of migrant workers leaves the UK, dreaming of a fresh start in prosperous Australia.

For nine-year-old Cleary Sullivan, deaf for three years now, the journey promises adventure, new friendships, and sea-monster sightings. For Glaswegian songstress Billie Galloway it’s a chance to leave a shameful mistake behind her, while English schoolteacher Tom Garnett hopes to shake his addictions and set his future on a brighter path.

But when a crew member is murdered and people begin to fall gravely ill, the Steadfast is plunged into chaos. Who is to blame? Who can be trusted? And where does the real danger lie? Thrown together by chance, and each guarding their own secrets, Cleary, Billie and Tom join forces to survive the journey and its aftermath.

The Trespassers is a compelling literary thriller brimming with guts, intelligence, and heart. Inspired by the true story of the Ticonderoga — a ‘fever ship’ full of migrant workers that reached Melbourne in 1852, sparking the creation of Australia’s first quarantine station — the story takes place some 200 years after this landmark event. Buy the book >

Praise for The Trespassers:

  • ‘A tightly crafted, clever story… A gripping, powerful read.’ – Bec Kavanagh (5-star review, Books+Publishing)
  • ‘If you’re looking for a readable literary novel with impact, intrigue, pace, and mysteries as deep and dark as the ocean, look no further’ –  Ellen Cregan (review, Readings: ‘Fiction Book of the Month’)
  • ‘Beautifully written and absolutely gripping. I could not put The Trespassers down’ – Favel Parrett
  • ‘Original and compelling. A thrilling novel with a brave and tender heart’ – Anna Krien
  • ‘The Trespassers dissects the horrors of our commercially driven, punishment-focused migration system through three fine-grained human stories. Compelling writing and flinty observations make this chilling story all too believable’ – Jane Rawson
  • Stylish and assured. In a genre that is becoming increasingly popular, Mundell’s work stands out for its literary quality’ – Graeme Simsion
  • ‘A thought-provoking and compelling near-future thriller. The Trespassers is a riveting read’ – Jed Mercurio
  • ‘Gripping reading, unputdownable from the first chapter, and inhabited by characters impossible to forget’ – Lisa Hill, ANZ Lit Lovers
  • ‘Ambitious and thought-provoking, an extrapolation with both intelligence and heart. It reaches from past to future in a story that is utterly contemporary, and relevant to our troubled times’ – Lucy Sussex, Sydney Morning Herald