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The Rules of Backyard Cricket

The Rules of Backyard Cricket

Jock Serong

  • awardShortlisted, Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Fiction, 2017
  • awardLonglisted, Indie Book Award for Fiction, 2017
  • It starts in a suburban backyard with Darren Keefe and his older brother, sons of a fierce and gutsy single mother. The endless glow of summer, the bottomless fury of contest. All the love and hatred in two small bodies poured into the rules of a made-up game.

    Darren has two big talents: cricket and trouble. No surprise that he becomes an Australian sporting star of the bad-boy variety—one of those men who’s always got away with things and just keeps getting.

    Until the day we meet him, middle aged, in the boot of a car. Gagged, cable-tied, a bullet in his knee. Everything pointing towards a shallow grave.

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket is a novel of suspense in the tradition of Peter Temple’s Truth. With glorious writing harnessed to a gripping narrative, it observes celebrity, masculinity—humanity—with clear-eyed lyricism and exhilarating narrative drive.

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket by Jock Serong, while classified as ‘crime’, is a compelling literary novel dissecting toxic sporting culture and its fallout.’ Paddy O’Reilly, Australian Book Review, 2016 Books of the Year

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket got the thumbs up from everyone.’ Favourite Fiction for 2016, Avenue Bookstore

    ‘Blow me down if I didn’t hang on every word.’ Clare Wright, Best Books of 2016, Australian  

    ‘One of the great novels written about sport…Delicious. It’s the top read of the summer.’ Stuff.co.nz

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket by Jock Serong, while classified as ‘crime’, is a compelling literary novel dissecting toxic sporting culture and its fallout.’ Paddy O’Reilly, Best Books of 2016, Australian Book Review 

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    Jock Serong
    About the Author

    Jock Serong lives and works on the far southwest coast of Victoria. Formerly a lawyer, he is now a features writer, and was the editor of Great Ocean Quarterly. His first novel, Quota, won the 2015 Ned Kelly Award for Best First Crime Novel. His most recent novel is The Rules of Backyard Cricket.

    Jock is married with four children and lives in...

    Read Moreright
    Extent:
    304pp
    Format:
    Paperback
    Text publication date:
    29 August 2016
    ISBN:
    9781925355215
    AU Price:
    $29.99
    NZ Price:
    $37.00
    Australian
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    Praise for Jock Serong
    andThe Rules of Backyard Cricket

    ‘Funny, sad and oddly touching…Beautifully written and acutely observed, The Rules of Backyard Cricket is a noir tour de force…Original Australian crime fiction of the first order.

    ‘Serong writes pithy, pin-sharp dialogue…The book is expertly plotted, and its noirish climax with its dark drama and its final twists, is devastating. Get out and buy this book; it is the best new novel I’ve read this year.’

    ‘A novel of suspense, I heartily recommend it.’

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket hits all other cricket books I’ve read to date for six. This tale is not just about cricket, it’s about the good, the bad and the ugly and a timely story, too, with sporting integrity often in question.’ 

    ‘Serong is an elegant writer who can move effortlessly from laugh out-loud funny to elegiac to downright touching…Those of us who played back garden cricket and remember how seriously it was taken by all concerned will lap up every single run and wicket in this book.’   

    ‘The writing is sharp and the flawed characters compelling…Serong bowls with a wry eye.’

    ‘Suffice it to say the back cover blurb that draws a parallel between The Rules of Backyard Cricket and Peter Temple’s best work is no exaggeration. Serong pulls off what I consider an Australian crime writer’s most sought-after Quinella (to use a metaphor from another sport): a literary crime novel that qualifies as genuine Australian noir.’

    ‘[A] gripping tale of sibling rivalry as two Aussie brothers battle in cricket and in life.

    ‘Jock Serong returns with this bitterly, beautifully nostalgic look at a seventies childhood gone awry’


    ‘Jock Serong’s gripping narrative is a compassionate exploration of masculinity and humanity as he chillingly questions whether we truly know those who are closest to us.’ 

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket by Jock Serong, while classified as ‘crime’, is a compelling literary novel dissecting toxic sporting culture and its fallout.’

    The Rules of Backyard Cricket got the thumbs up from everyone.’

    ‘Blow me down if I didn’t hang on every word.’

    ‘One of the great novels written about sport…Delicious. It’s the top read of the summer.’

    ‘The Rules of Backyard Cricket by Jock Serong, while classified as ‘crime’, is a compelling literary novel dissecting toxic sporting culture and its fallout.’

    Other editions ofThe Rules of Backyard Cricket
    • The Rules of Backyard Cricket
      ebook
      ISBN: 9781922253798
      29 August 2016
      Buy ebook
    Other Titles byJock Serong