SYDNEY, 1959. Billy Glasheen is flogging mailorder schemes out of a seedy back room in Chinatown. Want to play guitar in 14 days? Learn Italian in your spare time? Win big with an infallible betting system? Master the love secrets of the ancients? Bill’s your man.
But there are unsettled accounts in Billy’s past, and they’re coming due. As shadowy factions line up around him, he can’t be sure if he’s the target or caught in someone else’s crossfire. Or is he imagining the whole thing? Finally an ultimatum is delivered: come up with a small fortune in hush money, or cop a bullet and a shallow grave. Six months, and the clock is ticking.
It’s time to call in all debts and favours, but right when he needs them most, Bill’s old gang of beatniks, bandits, and hoochie coochie girls seem to have made themselves strangely scarce. He’s on his own.
Amaze Your Friends is a dark, wild ride through a city of easy money and sudden falls, of high times and hangovers, of jukebox rock’n’roll and the lowdown flophouse blues.