Johnno

Johnno

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Johnno

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Description:
Johnno is a semi-autobiographical novel written by Australian author David Malouf and was first published in 1975. It was Malouf's first novel.

In 2004 it was selected by the Brisbane City Council as the joint-winner of the annual One Book One Brisbane competition to find the book that best represents Brisbane. Johnno shared the honours with another, more recent, debut novel, The Girl Most Likely by Rebecca Sparrow.

The book has been adapted for the stage. It premiered at Brisbane's La Boite Theatre in 2004 and then transferred to the Derby Playhouse.

Plot summary and major themes

Johnno is written in the first person past tense and the narrator is only ever known by the nickname "Dante". Johnno is heavily autobiographical. The novel is centred upon the friendship between Dante and a schoolmate known as "Johnno" in their adolescence and early adulthood in the 1940s and 1950s in Brisbane.

The subtropical Brisbane environment and various elements of upper-class Australian culture in the twentieth century recur throughout the book. There are many references to Brisbane's verdant gardens and parklands and other aspects of its urban geography such as its now-defunct tramways and the Brisbane River.

The novel takes the form of an extended reminiscence and begins with the narrator finding a photograph of Johnno among...
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