In her humorous and emotionally resonant debut, Emma Smith-Stevens follows the exploits and evolution of a young man - known only as ?the Australian? - over the course of a dozen years, from his time posing for tourist photos as Superman to his life in New York, chasing fame and fortune. Married to a woman he barely knows and struggling to forge a relationship with his son, the Australian travels between the U.S. and Melbourne, seeking to reconnect with his deceased parents through his father?s Australian Outdoor Geographic magazines and the Dreaming Tracks, sacred landmarks his mother longed to explore.
Through this quest for self-discovery, the Australian becomes both more and less enigma: ?the idea of this guy you could find in any city, a hostel anywhere in the world, smiling, suntanned, hauling a backpack.? A poignant and at times satirical meditation on masculinity, fatherhood, isolation, New York City, fame, and loss, The Australian examines the human tendency to fall in love with the idea of another person and the importance of knowing one?s essential nature.