Author(s): Sue McPherson
A coming of age story about four boys and their lot in life. Recounted through storytelling sessions at their school over a period of five days, these boys chronicle their lives. They are at times demanding, occasionally rude, always funny and unexpectedly profound. The boys like to challenge themselves and the rules, and soon realise that not everything goes to plan...
Set on the coast of south-east Queensland, Brontide is a cleverly crafted coming-of-age text in which four school boys share their stories with a visiting author. Told through a series of recorded interviews, their stories intertwine with sad and tragic twists, as each boy grapples with issues of identity, prejudice and acceptance. Sue McPherson has used conventions of free verse to tell this story, effortlessly combining symbolism to tie a seemingly simple text together, although it is anything but simple in its message. Brontide is a truly absorbing text that is best read
without knowing too much about it; the author’s ability to engage readers and catch them off-guard is breathtaking. Due to the subject matter and language used, it is best suited to a secondary student audience.
Sue McPherson is an award-winning storyteller who lives on the Sunshine Coast. She is of Wiradjuri, Torres Strait Islander and Irish heritage, and grew up with her adopted family near Batlow in southern New South Wales. Inspired to write by her two teenage sons, in 2011 Sue won the inaugural black&write! Indigenous Writing Fellowship from the State Library of Queensland for her manuscript, Grace Beside Me, which was published by Magabala Books in 2012. A regular writer for TV and film, in 2015, Sue’s 12-minute short drama, Nan and a Whole Lot of Trouble premiered on ABC TV. In 2017, Grace Beside Me
was commissioned by NITV to be its first ever scripted live-action series, which debuted on Australian screens in early 2018.