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Cover image courtesy of publisher.
y separately published work icon Smoky Joe's Cafe single work   novel  
Issue Details: First known date: 2001... 2001 Smoky Joe's Cafe
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'A Vietnam vet returns to an Australia that regards him as a mercenary guilty of war crimes.

'Thommo begins to develop all kinds of physical and mental problems, and thinks it must only be him until he finds that he is not alone. Ten mates, all who remain of his platoon, are affected in the same way.

'Now Thommo and his mates are eleven angry men out for revenge. They rope in an ex-Viet Cong with 'special skills' and his own secret agenda. They're the 'Dirty Dozen', just like the movie. Only it's real life, and they're so screwed up they couldn't fight their way out of a wet paper bag.

'That is, until a woman of character steps in. Wendy's infant daughter is dying and needs a transplant. She sets out to mould this bunch of ex-jungle fighters into a unit that will fight for justice, by fair means or foul.

'Hell hath no fury …' (Publication summary)

Adaptations

Honey Lorrae Desmond , Gael Ballantyne , Charlie Hull (composer), Martine De Cock (composer), Doug Parkinson (composer), Scott Ogler (composer), 2007 single work musical theatre

'Australia 1971, Thommo has returned from Vietnam War married his sweetheart Wendy, the marriage is going through some rough time, he can’t settle back into civilian life, and being forced to live with his mother in law doesn’t help! When his beautiful little girl Honey was born, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot! But after her 4th birthday Honey is diagnosed with Leukaemia and may need a bone-marrow transplant. Thommo and Wendy have no other family than Mum so there’s a million to one chance of finding a donor.

Out of the blue, under the guise of a reunion, Shorty Thommo’s ex Sargent rides up with a bunch of the blokes from Vietnam. Shorty reveals his plan to raise money to fight for Honey’s life. It may not be completely legal, but what choice do they have!

When Thommo “blabs” about the plan to Wendy, she wants to be part of it. There is no way she is going to leave the fate of her child to a bunch of screwed up Vietnam Vets. Reluctantly the boys agree, and with the special skills of Nam Tran, an ex Viet Cong, this motley crew become our unlikely heroes.

With the help of Wendy’s best friend Maureen, it’s decided they’ll make a drink that is an aphrodisiac “guaranteed to spice up your sex life”, and sell it to the social set as a non-addictive sweet summer drink!! Hash Honey!

It may be too late for Honey; she is now in a ‘bubble’ in a Sydney hospital. Thommo and Wendy are faced with the realisation that they may lose her.

But Shorty and the boys are not ready to give up...they convert a Kenworth truck into a mobile clinic. Escorted by 150 Vets on Harleys they search Australia for a donor for Honey, helping Vets and their families along the way. As planned, it sparks a media frenzy that brings the plight of the Vets to the public…the shit hits the fan in Canberra!

After almost a year on the road, they get that chance in a million!' (Sydney Stage Online)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Ringwood, Ringwood - Croydon - Kilsyth area, Melbourne - East, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2001 .
      image of person or book cover 5963378228308170774.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Extent: ix, 237p.p.
      ISBN: 014029807X
    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2006 .
      image of person or book cover 2600845019408091281.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Note/s:
      • Published 28 August 2006
      • ebook
      ISBN: 9781742280707Price
    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2006 .
      image of person or book cover 6582786470453587893.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Extent: 256p.
      Note/s:
      • Published 28 August 2006
      ISBN: 9780143004738

Works about this Work

Showman Who Knew the Power of a Story Blanche Clark , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Advertiser , 24 November 2012; (p. 26-27)
CoverNotes Mike Shuttleworth , 2001 single work review
— Appears in: The Sunday Age , 11 March 2001; (p. 11)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
Riding the Cliches into the Shallows of History Simon Caterson , 2000 single work review
— Appears in: The Sunday Age , 24 September 2000; (p. 11)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
Vet Offensive A. P. Riemer , 2000 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 23 September 2000; (p. 9)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
Courtenay's Adventure on the Web Susan Wyndham , 2000 single work column biography
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 12 September 2000; (p. 15)
Vet Offensive A. P. Riemer , 2000 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 23 September 2000; (p. 9)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
Riding the Cliches into the Shallows of History Simon Caterson , 2000 single work review
— Appears in: The Sunday Age , 24 September 2000; (p. 11)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
CoverNotes Mike Shuttleworth , 2001 single work review
— Appears in: The Sunday Age , 11 March 2001; (p. 11)

— Review of Smoky Joe's Cafe Bryce Courtenay , 2001 single work novel
Showman Who Knew the Power of a Story Blanche Clark , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Advertiser , 24 November 2012; (p. 26-27)
Courtenay's Adventure on the Web Susan Wyndham , 2000 single work column biography
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 12 September 2000; (p. 15)
Last amended 17 Apr 2015 11:06:35
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