Judy’s refugee drama

Storyteller: Bestselling author Judy Nunn turns to the plight of refugees in her lastest novel, Sanctuary. She will be talking about it at Kogarah Library.
Storyteller: Bestselling author Judy Nunn turns to the plight of refugees in her lastest novel, Sanctuary. She will be talking about it at Kogarah Library.

It was the story that best-selling author Judy Nunn never thought she would write.

Her new book, Sanctuary is the story of a boatload of refugees who arrive on a remote island off the coast of Western Australia and their interaction with a tiny fish community 40 kilmoetres away on the mainland.

Judy Nunn picks big Australian themes for her novels including Spirit of the Ghan, Maralinga and Pacific. But while her stories are Australian, her appeal is international, with her work published in German, French, Dutch, Czech and Spanish.

Her inspiration for her latest book was a visit to the desolate Abrolhos Islands off the coast of Western Australia.

“I felt what a great setting for a story. My husband (author Bruce Venables) suggested I write about  a boatload of refugees arrived on an island where there is everything they need,” she said.

“I started doing research and felt that I would modernise the story and make them the survivors of a shipwreck and of Middle Eastern background.

“The book makes no political statements. The characters in the book make their own statements from both sides.

“The book itself is about people. The face of the refugees is the face of human beings.”

Judy Nunn will be speaking about her new novel, Sanctuary at Kogarah Library on Monday, October 23 from 7pm to 8.30pm. It is a free event but bookings are essential by phoning 9330 9527.