Bawalla’s main character is Mick, a plumber who lives in a small coastal Australian town where his wife is a school teacher. Both are eagerly anticipating the birth of their first child. Mick tells of his fears and hopes for the future as the story unfolds. At times, the story flashes back to parts of his childhood, both humorous and tragic, to let the reader know how he came to be the man he is.
The main story revolves around the following sequence of events:
Mick’s wife Janelle, becomes frustrated before one of her classes after an incident with recently-returned-to-town know-it-all, Ken Perry. She takes it out on one of her students, Jay who happens to be the son of Mike’s best mate and employee, Dave. Ego bruised, Jay and his mates play a seemingly harmless trick on their teacher a few nights later by drunkenly prank calling her to announce that her husband has been involved in an accident. Janelle, who earlier in the night had a phone conversation regarding drink-driving with her husband whilst celebrating his brother’s birthday, rushes to make it to the hospital and in doing so, has an accident which causes her to miscarriage.
The story then focuses on Mike and his ability to control his urge for some sort of revenge versus forgiving his best-mates son, amid strained relationships between all parties.
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