It's 1942, and war is raging in Europe and in the Pacific. The Japanese army is on Australia's doorstep, and the small coastal Queensland town of Maryborough is on full war footing. What they are not prepared for is the arrival in the town of a troupe of incompetent actors whose unjustifiably self-confident leader, William Power, is determined to bring his daring production of Titus Andronicus to the barbarians of rural Australia. Unfortunately for the Power Players, the only gift William Power has is a capacity for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
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Failed Shakespearean actor and would-be private detective William Power returns to Melbourne in this wry sequel that re-creates the tension and fear of wartime Australia. Bloodied and broken but somehow unbowed, he arrives in a town struggling under war-rationing and full of cocky American soldiers and lands squarely in the bosom of his childhood home in Carlton, now dominated by his sister-in-law, the odious Darlene.
Failed Shakespearean actor and would-be private investigator Will Power's unique detective skills are once again in demand. The Japanese army is rampaging through the islands of the South Pacific, and Australia's front line of defence is a top-secret crack division of men embedded deep in the tropical wilderness of Northern Australia. But one of this elite corps is a murderer preying on his comrades one by one. With a case too sensitive to be trusted to the police, military intelligence turn to William Power.
Will Power has returned from the Northern Territory shaken, stirred and generally discombobulated. It is late 1942, and, demeaningly enough, he finds himself playing a pantomime dame. If only this was his only worry.... As his great hero, Shakespeare, once noted, 'When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions'. Can Will finally overcome his tendency to be the living embodiment of Murphy's law?