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Daley, Paul: Jesustown: A Novel

Paul Daley

Jesustown: A Novel, Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2022

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 … 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. [Above all the book is about] the myths that stand between us and history’s unpalatable truths. (blurb)

‘An unflinching examination of the truths white Australia refuses to acknowledge.’ (Jock Serong, author of Preservation)

‘A searing dissection of the arrogance of white history and generations of moral failure.’ (Michael Brissenden, author of Dead Letters)

The book is reviewed for Honest History by David Stephens. A review in The Conversation by Tim Rowse. The author answers questions about the book for Booktopia website. The author talks at length to Susan Chenery of the Sydney Morning Herald. The author writes about the book in Guardian Australia. The author writes about the book in the Australian Financial Review, explaining why he used the novel form to tell a historical tale. The author on ABC’s The Bookshelf.

The Honest History website has many items by and links to work by Paul Daley (use our Authors A-Z). Daley also had a chapter in The Honest History Book (2017) entitled ‘Our most important war: The legacy of frontier conflict’.