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It is 1924. The dusty, snaking streets of Sydney are a hive of ex-diggers, widows and orphans. Albermarle Darcy, DSO, is one of those returned to a world turned on its head, his mother dying of the influenza and all his childhood friends either dead or mad. So he appears to have made a covenant, "a pact, you see/with this new world of ours", turning his back on it all with a line off the Darling street pier - "in a port city/it is still possible to turn your back on the world/and still have it there."
One of Albie's touchstones is the game of cricket, and one of its most promising local proponents, Archie McKinley, a fragile lyrical batsman with an over-protective sister who mans the club scoreboard with our hero watching the world through a tiny square of light "the running back and forth/the unsettled equation/like a world being born."
"The novel is shot through with nostalgia, loss, hunger, and a rich sense of setting....a lovely, evocative book, full of rich imagery and sensual moments." - Maggie Ball
Justin Lowe was born in Sydney but spent large portions of his early childhood on the Spanish island of Minorca with his younger sister and artist mother. Completing his schooling back in Sydney, Justin gained a BA in the Central West of NSW and then spent several years in Europe working odd jobs and honing his skills as a writer. On returning again to Sydney, Justin settled down with his partner in what was then a fairly crusty Newtown teeming with disparate souls where through the course of the 1990’s he published more and more of his poetry and collaborated with some of Sydney’s finest songwriters such as Tim Freedman of The Whitlams as well as editing seminal poetry mag Homebrew and releasing two collections, From Church to Alice (1996) and Try Laughter (2000). In 2001 Justin moved to the Blue Mountains west of Sydney and has since published one more poetry collection (Glass Poems, 2006) and two verse novels (The Great Big Show, 2007 and Magellenica, 2008).