Seventy-three thousand convicts were transported to the British penal colony of Van Diemen's Land in the first half of the nineteenth century. They played a vital role in the building of the settlements, as well as the running of the newly established colony. Simon Barnard's A-Z of Convicts in Van Diemen's Land is a rich and compelling account of the lives of the men, women and children who were transported to Tasmania for crimes ranging from stealing bread to poisoning family members. Their sentences, punishments, achievements and suffering make for fascinating reading. And the spectacular illustrations, each one carefully drawn in meticulous detail from contemporary records, bring this extraordinary history to life.