This comic narrative from the lips of a 109-year-old con-man is peopled with aviators, car salesmen, Chinamen and impresarios. By the author of Booker prizewinner Oscar and Lucinda.
Herbert Badgery is vagabond and charlatan, aviator and car salesman, seducer and patriarch. He might very well be the embodiment of Australia’s national character, especially in its fondness for tall stories and questionable history. As this charming scoundrel traverses the continent and a century’s worth of outlandish encounters – not least with a genteel dowager fending off madness with an electric belt, and a ravishing young girl with a dangerous fondness for rooftop trysts – one truth emerges. Herbert Badgery may in fact be the king of all con men.