Former Warrnambool Resident, and Nationally acclaimed writer Rob DeKok is launching his new book "The Clearing" at the Warrnambool RSL on Thursday, May 25h.
The Clearing is a story built into the flight of one bullet – a bullet which connects two narratives: that of Tim, an Australian conscript, and Khai, a Viet Cong soldier. That one shot joins Tim’s next thirty years and Khai's previous twenty – both lives exploding onto the pages like shrapnel from a tortured mind.
Tim spent twelve months in Vietnam and survived. Khai spent twenty years there and didn't. Their fateful contact – a moment of terror and grace in a bombed-out tract of land in South Vietnam – is the heart of The Clearing.
From then on Tim can only acknowledge the single shot he fired by holding that bullet in perpetual flight. In doing so shards of memory become unstuck vignettes – irregular glimpses into the lives of two men: one who denies his past and another denied his future.
Erratic, confessional and disturbing, The Clearing is a fictional account of a controversial war, a topical meditation on one life taken away and another changed forever by the aftertrace of combat.