Magabala Books Magabala Books Australia’s leading Indigenous publisher Support us

We respectfully caution Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers that this website contains images of people who have passed away.


Gurawul the Whale: An ancient story for our time


More than 70 years ago, the ancient legend of Gurawul the whale was passed down to Yuin Elder Uncle Max Dulumunmun Harrison by his grandfather and uncles. He promised them that one day he would travel to the southern land, Tasmania, and search for the whale dreaming of their Ancestors.

This exquisitely illustrated book tells the story of Uncle Max’s journey to fulfil that promise, and how he eventually came face to face with Gurawul.

Filled with important cultural knowledge and personal stories, Uncle Max sadly died before Gurawul could be published, and his family are continuing his legacy to show how science is finally beginning to catch up with these ‘old blackfella’ stories.


Praise for Gurawul the Whale: An ancient story for our time

“An absorbing dive into the history, science and dreaming of whale migration...a multilayered and richly rewarding read.”
Jo Vabolis, Glam Adelaide

“This deeply engaging story is one which is important to be shared with others. A truly special book that has a place in a school or public library.”
Kathryn Beilby, ReadPlus

Max Dulumunmun Harrison

Max Dulumunmun Harrison was a deeply respected and revered Elder of the  Yuin Nation, which extends from Wollongong down the east coast of Australia to Gippsland and out to the Southern Tablelands of NSW. Initiated...

Read more

Laura La Rosa

Laura La Rosa is a freelance published writer, critic, designer and illustrator. She holds a Bachelor of Creative Arts and Design (Graphic Design), where she received two Dean's awards for academic excellence.

Gurawul the Whale: An ancient story for our time,...

Read more