Paul Daley in conversation with Mike Bowers | Jesustown

Paul Daley in conversation with Mike Bowers | Jesustown

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The Royal Oak

36 College Street

Balmain, NSW 2041


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Join awardwinning journalist Paul Daley in conversation with the host of Talking Pictures on his new novel about Australia's brutal frontier

About this event

'Poignant and powerful; the best book I've read this year.' – Chris Hammer

'An unflinching examination of the truths white Australia refuses to acknowledge.' – Jock Serong

'This is a story-a great story-with all the tragedy and lies that is colonial Australia. Our circle of tragedy.' – Thomas Mayor

From award-winning journalist Paul Daley comes a gripping multi-generational saga about Australian frontier violence and cultural theft that will capture the national imagination.

Join him on Tuesday 5 July in conversation with Mike Bowers, Guardian Australia's photographer-at-large and host of Talking Pictures on Insiders.

Attendees are asked to arrive at 6.30pm or earlier for a 7pm start upstairs at The Royal Oak Balmain. Seating is unallocated – another reason to arrive early to secure an optimal spot. Why not make a full evening of it, too, by booking a meal at the Royal Oak before or after the event? One of Balmain's oldest and best-known pubs, it serves a delicious range of food and beverages.

Jesustown will be available for purchase at the venue through Roaring Stories, with book signings from Daley following the discussion.

If you miss out on a ticket, you can still watch the event as it is livestreamed from the Roaring Stories Facebook page (accessible on the Home page and from the Live tab). A recording will also be available to view later as an upload on the Roaring Stories YouTube channel.

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Morally bereft popular historian Patrick Renmark flees London in disgrace after the accidental death of his infant son. With one card left to play, he reluctantly takes a commission to write the biography of his legendary pioneering adventurer-anthropologist grandfather.

With no enthusiasm and even less integrity, Patrick travels to Jesustown, the former mission town in remote Australia where his grandfather infamously brokered 'peace' between the Indigenous custodians of the area and the white constabulary. He hasn't been back there since he was a teenager when a terrible confrontation with his grandfather made him vow never to return.

Of course nothing is as it seems or as Patrick wants it to be. Unable to lay his own son to rest, Patrick must re-examine the legacy of his renowned grandfather and face the repercussions of his actions on subsequent generations. Will what he finds bring him redemption or add to the vault of family secrets and terrible guilt he keeps uncovering?

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Paul Daley has won two Walkley Awards and is all too aware of the sensitive nature of writing about cultural appropriation. A columnist for Guardian Australia who regularly writes on Indigenous affairs, he is also a short story writer, essayist and playwright. His most recent book is the political novel, Challenge. His non-fiction books have been shortlisted for the Prime Minister's History Prize, the Manning Clark House Awards, the Nib and the ACT Book of the Year.

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Mike Bowers is Guardian Australia's photographer-at-large and the host of Talking Pictures on ABC Insiders. Mike spent 14 years in the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery working for a number of publications including The Australian, The Age, BRW, Time, The Daily Telegraph and The Sydney Morning Herald. He covered five federal election campaigns and has accompanied three prime ministers on assignments both around Australia and overseas. He has covered conflicts in Cambodia, Kosovo, Bougainville, Papua New Guinea and The Middle East. He was Pictorial Editor for The Sydney Morning Herald from 2001-2008. He has published several books, including Gallipoli Untold Stories, The Big Picture 175 Years of The Sydney Morning Herald and A Century of Pictures, 100 years of Herald photography and Armageddon - troubles on a faded ANZAC trail, co-authored with Paul Daley.

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a) COVID Safety

This is a COVID Safe event. Attendance is conditional on compliance with current and relevant NSW Heath COVID Safe guidelines.

b) Refunds

Please note that tickets are non-refundable unless the event is cancelled or postponed due to extenuating circumstances. Refunds cannot be issued 48 hours before the event.

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This event is presented by Roaring Stories Bookshop Balmain and Allen & Unwin

With thanks to our venue partner The Royal Oak Balmain

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