The Courier-Mail story: Benjamin Law’s ‘The Family Law’, June 2010

My first story for Brisbane newspaper The Courier-Mail, which was published in the Saturday ‘ETC’ entertainment/travel/culture lift-out, as well as online. Excerpt below:

Brisbane-based author Benjamin LawBenjamin Law’s book deals with his wonderfully dysfunctional family

by Andrew McMillen

When Brisbane author Benjamin Law [pictured right] decided to write his first book, he realised that rather than writing a thinly disguised memoir, he’d best come clean and write non-fiction.

The problem was that, in his case, truth really was stranger than fiction.

He tells the story of his father, who didn’t meet his own father until he was 12 years old. His father’s father had left his wife shortly after she became pregnant, opting to leave their small village on the outskirts of Canton, China, to seek opportunity in San Francisco.

American dollars were wired back to his wife and the son he’d never met, until he decided to make the month-long voyage home. Thirty minutes after greeting his son for the first time, he dropped dead.

“Is it possible to describe what happened next without sounding like a liar?” Law wonders, before describing the event as “a plot contrivance so unrealistic it would be manipulative to include it, if it hadn’t actually happened.”

Full story at The Courier-Mail online. Scanned newspaper clipping below – click for a closer look. I’ll publish the full interview with Benjamin Law in due course.

Benjamin Law's 'The Family Law' story in The Courier-Mail's ETC section, by Andrew McMillen

The Family Law – which can be purchased via Black Inc Publishing here – comes highly recommended.

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