Peter Grose in conversation with Tom Keneally
Date & Time
Peter Grose joins Tom Keneally in the Tom Keneally Centre to discuss his new book, Ten Rogues, that tells the unlikely story of convict schemers, a stolen brig and an escape from Van Diemen’s Land to Chile.
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Researching and writing this book was great fun, but it also made me angry. I should have been taught that the ‘transportation’ of convicts from Great Britain to Australia started with the Royal Navy and the First Fleet, but by the time of the Second Fleet two years later it had been ‘privatised’. And who were the lucky businesses? Answer, ex-slavers. […] So while I set out, as always, to entertain the reader with a strong story, I hope the reader will share some of my fury at the sheer cruelty and injustice of the whole convict system.”
— Peter Grose on Ten Rogues
About Ten Rogues
With the lightness of touch of the master storyteller that he is, Peter Grose brings to irresistible life the story of a small band of convicts who managed to escape the living hell of the Tasmanian penal colony of Sarah Island. Their getaway began by stealing the leaky and untested brig they had helped to build, and then sailing it across the Pacific from Tasmania to Chile with neither a map nor a chronometer.
But their story does not begin or end there. From the strong connection between the slave trade and convict ‘transportation’ to the possible illegality of the whole convict system, Ten Rogues shines a light into some dark and previously well-hidden corners of colonial history.
About Peter Grose
Peter Grose began his working life as a journalist for the Sydney Daily Mirror before becoming the first London correspondent of The Australian. He switched from journalism to literary agency, setting up Curtis Brown Australia, then the first literary agency in Australia and now the biggest. After moving to the London office of Curtis Brown, where he continued as a literary agent, he joined the London publisher Martin Secker & Warburg as publishing director. In his ‘retirement’ he returned to his first love: writing. He is the author of three best-selling history books. He is also the proud holder of British, American and Australian private pilot’s licences, and has flown all over Australia, Europe and the United States in single-engined aircraft. He lives in France.
About Tom Keneally
Tom Keneally won the Booker Prize in 1982 with Schindler’s Ark, later made into the Steven Spielberg Academy Award-winning film Schindler’s List. His non-fiction includes the memoir Searching for Schindler and Three Famines, an LA Times Book of the Year, and the histories The Commonwealth of Thieves, The Great Shame and American Scoundrel. His fiction includes Napoleon’s Last Island, Shame and the Captives, The Daughters of Mars, The Widow and Her Hero(shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award), An Angel in Australia and Bettany’s Book. His novels The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, Gossip from the Forest, and Confederates were all shortlisted for the Booker Prize, while Bring Larks and Heroes and Three Cheers for the Paraclete won the Miles Franklin Award. The People’s Train was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award and shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers Prize, South East Asia division. He also co-authors the Monsarrat series of crime novels with his daughter, Meg Keneally.