Ok Tedi accused of causing more damage
New Dawn powers ahead on B/ville

The greatest tragedy in the South Pacific

Bougainville Blue  I’ve just been listening to Brian Darcey talking with ABC Far North Queensland interviewer Fiona Sewell about his book Bougainville Blue, reviewed a month or so ago in these Notes [you can read the review here].

I wrote back then: “Wherever you go in this book - apart from the plot which is a fictional collage, although close enough to reality to be plausible - there is an authenticity of observation and an acute awareness of much of the tangible and latent stresses that characterised PNG at a time when many of us felt we knew the country very, very well.” In fact, Brian knew it much better than the rest of us – and he’s worth listening to on the subject [you can listen to the ABC interview here].

Brian explains how the Bougainville copper mine – at the time the biggest gold and copper mine in the world - effectively destroyed the island. “Bougainville was destroyed,” he says. “Still is. The greatest tragedy in the South Pacific since World War II. And it’s still not over.”

The novel Bougainville Blue started out as reminiscences for a family reunion, and just grew. “I was a late blooming writer,” Brian explains. “I won't see 80 again.” And he remains cagey about a sequel to what may be a late but is a splendidly readable book.

You can visit the Bougainville Blue website here, find out more about Brian and the book, and, yes, order yourself a copy.


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