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Books and Ideas at Montalto

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Chloe Hooper

Listen to Chloe Hooper

Small-town secrets, police politics and catastrophic loss – all loomed large in Chloe Hooper’s groundbreaking 2008 narrative non-fiction book, The Tall Man, about tragedy on Palm Island in Queensland. Her new book treads similar thematic ground – but in the drastically different landscape of Gippsland, Victoria, at the time of the February 2009 Black Saturday fires.

With The ArsonistHooper takes readers inside the hunt for the man whose actions caused devastation throughout the Latrobe Valley during the deadliest bushfire disaster in Australia’s history. It’s a gripping and insightful investigation from one of Australia’s brightest talents.

What motivates a person to start a fire? How does fear of bushfire play out in our national psyche? At Montalto, Hooper discusses disaster and deadly mischief with host Elizabeth McCarthy.

Books and Ideas at Montalto series sound design and music: Jon Tjhia.

Books and Ideas at Montalto

A series of thoughtful conversations about Australian literature – away from the city, at Montalto on the Mornington Peninsula.