Sometimes, when you search for the truth, you find you're just... Hunting Elephants. A remarkable new novel from the winner of the winner of the 2008 NSW Premier's Literary Award for Town.
Harry reads book, he asks questions; he's a naturally curious young man. So when he and his parents head out to the country for Great-uncle Frank's fourth wedding, he prepares himself. He learns what he can before they leave. After all, he doesn't want to look stupid when Frank's time in the Vietnam War comes up in conversation. If it comes up.
But perhaps Harry has more to worry about than an old man's war stories. Is there a crazed gunman in the bush? And what's being kept hidden in the old caravan behind Frank's house? Besides, harry has scars and memories and guilt of his own to deal with, which won't be easy while he's surrounded by truths that sound like likes, and lies that might just be true.
"I was planning to write a book about the Vietnam War, and as I started interviewing veterans, I discovered something very interesting. I found that despite what many think, there is no 'default attitude' to that experience. To presume that there is one is to flirt with cliché and stereotype. We assume so much about these, and other, matters. We presume to know. We smugly believe we have the inside running on how we should approach people who have lived through such traumatic experiences. But I found that if you were to interview a dozen vets, you'd get a dozen different attitudes and views. Through the eyes of a boy, this book explores that idea- that we can (or rather should) never assume anything" James Roy.
James Roy was born in Truncle, western New South Wales in 1968, and spent much of his early life living on mission compounds in Papua New Guinea and Fiji. James's first novel for young adults, Almost Wednesday, was release in 1996. His second book, Full Moon Racing, earned a Notable Book listing in the 1999 CBCA Book of the Year Awards. Among his many other works, his mid-grade novel Captain Mack and its prequel Billy Mack's War were both CBCA Honour Books, as was A Boat For Bridget. His popular non-fiction title The 'S' Word0 A Boys' Guide to Sex, Puberty and Growing Up is used widely in middle-school, and has been sold into the UK, Irish and French markets. His most recent books are Problem Child and Queasy Rider. He won the 2008 NSW Premier's Literary Award for the critically acclaimed Town.
A much sought-after presenter, James visits thousands of student's across Australia and South-East Asia each yea, talking enthusiastically about the writing life, and helping young people discover their own talents for creative writing. He lives in the Blue Mountains with his wife and two daughters, and his interests include music, sport and bushwalking.
Author: James Roy