The Orchard

Posted by Gene Head on April 18, 2020

I’m extremely excited to announce the completion of “THE ORCHARD”, the first novel of 2020. We’re taking it through the editing phase now.



In this transgressive fiction novel Gene Head skillfully uses the platform of the tediously over told “untouchable farmer’s daughter” cliché, to tell a tale of significantly greater sophistication, unearthing the power of denial in a man motivated by will, but dominated by a lifestyle of instant gratification and alcohol addiction.


Is it a road trip?… Or just a trip?

Undiscovered artist Elmo Brenner enjoys German symphonies and a good book on philosophy, but on paper he’s an unskilled labourer slipping in one menial job and out the next. It’s business as usual when he lands work picking on a North Queensland fruit farm and Elmo fills his time outside orchard duties with booze and mischief.

Here he meets the farmer’s two beautiful child sized daughters, Trixie and Roberta; both tiny with pigtailed hair, braces on their teeth and identical in every comparable way. They are living images of one another, but not twins. Elmo’s conundrum is that while Trixie is just 14-years-old, Roberta is an adult at 22, and she’s got a lot in common with him–similar to Elmo, she admires de Kooning’s art, reads Nietzsche and loves the films of John Waters.

When his employer learns of his truck licence, Elmo is asked to haul a yield cross country. The promotion comes with a pay raise, but there’s a hitch that’ll cause trouble—he has to give Roberta a ride along too. Now he’s driving a lorry through 2000 kilometres of the Simpson Desert, rolling dice with temptation, and arguing his point with lawmen that continue to assume Roberta is just a 12-year-old kiddie. This three-day journey is only the beginning of his woes as he gets a taste of what unthinkable nonsense lies in wait in central Australia.

He’ll discover his darkest secrets, but will Elmo handle them lucid?… or will he drink for weeks to face the horror?

Stay tuned, book lovers and join the mailing list for info when it’s released.

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