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Hugh is 16. He loves cello, he's a closet car fanatic, and he has no luck with girls. When his grandfather, Poppy, asks him to go on one last road trip to Uluru in his 1970 Holden HG Monaro GTS 350 V8, Hugh decides, for once in his life, to do the unexpected. Little does he know that Poppy has an ulterior motive ... one that would take both their lives in a direction they never expected...

One of the country's finest young cellists, 16 year-old Hugh Twycross has a very bright future. A future that has been mapped out by his parents, his teachers, by everybody, it seems, except Hugh Twycross.

Hugh has a secret, though: he loves cars and he loves car racing. When his newly discovered grandfather, Poppy, asks him to go on a road trip to Uluru in his 1970 Holden HT Monaro, Hugh decides, for once in his life, to do the unexpected.

As they embark on a journey into the vast and fierce landscape of the Australian interior, Hugh discovers that Poppy has a secret that will unravel both their lives and take them in a direction they never expected.

Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    August 31, 2009


    240 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    August 31, 2009

    Penguin eBooks

    232 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Awards and Recognition

  • APA Book Design Awards
    Best Designed YA Book
  • Inky Awards
    Gold Inky Award for an Australian Book
  • Prime Minister's Literary Award
    Young Adult Fiction
  • Queensland Literary Awards
    Young Adult Book
  • Victorian Premier's Literary Award
    Writing for Young Adults
  • CBCA Book of the Year Awards
    Notable Book
    Older Readers

Also by Phillip Gwynne

Brothers from a Different Mother
Stuff Happens: Michael
Escape From Kids' Club: Pocket Money Puffin
A Chook Called Harry: Aussie Bites
Jetty Rats
Nukkin Ya
Deadly, Unna?


Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life
The Getaway: Diary of a Wimpy Kid (BK12)
Undercover Princess
Our Australian Girl: The Lina Stories
The Whiz Mob and the Grenadine Kid
Two Wolves
How To Be A Bawse
Our Australian Girl: The Rose Stories
Our Australian Girl: The Poppy Stories
La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Volume One
Charlie And The Great Glass Elevator
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
Juliet, Nearly a Vet collection 2
Thirteen Reasons Why
Father Christmas’s Fake Beard
A Semi-definitive List of Worst Nightmares
Ranger's Apprentice 4: Oakleaf Bearers
Clementine Rose and the Surprise Visitor 1
George's Marvellous Medicine
Love, Simon