‘This is a personal story that has huge meaning to all of us, beginning in a beautiful safe world which turns suddenly to chaos and terror. A child discovers for herself that there is history that can’t be hidden – it cries out in the darkness of secrets. But it’s also a story of light and love and exceptional courage. The pages seemed to turn by themselves. Please read it.’
Multi award winning Australian author, 2020-2021 Australian Children’ Laureate
‘This book will enchant you with its mystery, excitement, adventure, and the extraordinary courage of its characters. It will be impossible to stop reading, and when you finish the book you’ll find the insights and compassion stay with you always, as do those you have met within its pages. As Susanne weaves in stories from her family’s secrets, she writes about the essence of humanity.’
AM, Australian author, historian, ecologist, 2014–15 Australian Children’ Laureate; and Senior Australian of the Year.
‘A truly extraordinary read that captures your heart and soul. It’s sensational … the magic realism … the time jumps … the tension and drama just radiate. The stakes are life and death and I was riveted. Beautiful vivid characters who I cared about so much. It’s an absolute hands down winner.’
Acclaimed director, dramaturge, writer for Queensland Theatre Company adapting Trent Dalton’s Boy Swallows Universe, and by the Australian Chamber Orchestra (ACO) adapting and directing a new works.
Thank you to May Gibbs Children’s Literature Trust for the Fellowship that gave me creative time to work on ‘Heroes of The Secret Underground’.
Heroes of the Secret Underground Begins
Her father was part of the youth underground, who saved the children of Budapest. Its headquarters was in The Glass House in Budapest 1944. The Glass House became the last refugee to escape the deportation to death camps and at one time housed up to 3000 kids, women & men. There was one toilet and one shower.
The story of The Glass House is incredible with so many heroes at a time of evil. Discover the heroes in the story and the glossary of ‘Heroes of the Secret Underground’. The Glass House still exists 10 minutes’ walk from the magnificent Hungarian State Opera House. The address is 29 Vadász Street, Budapest Hungary. Its history is largely unknown.
The Hungarian State Opera House was part of Susanne’s mother’s life. Music was part of their lives. She loved her beloved violin.
The Danube, Margaret Island in the Danube, the bridges across the Danube, Gellert Hill, are at the heart of Budapest and ‘Heroes of the Secret Underground’.
Susanne grew up with the secrets of the past, like many second generation children of survivors. Heroes of the Secret Underground was written to resolve hidden ghosts, recognise the courage of kids and bring knowledge from the past to create change for the future.