AUTHOR Tony Park is addicted to everything about Africa including its culture, extensive history, people and wildlife.
His addiction to the country has resulted in Park creating nine action-thriller novels, with all stories set in the African continent.
‘‘In 1995 my wife and I were supposed to go on a once in a life time trip to Africa,’’ Park said.
‘‘Instead it changed our lives forever and we now spend six months in Australia and six months in Africa every year.
‘‘It’s the landscape, the people and the diversity that I love about the country.
‘‘It’s a fantastic place and there is no end of stories in Africa.’’
Park will visit Castle Hill Library next Wednesday, February 20, at 7pm, to discuss his newest novel, Dark Heart, and his recent experiences in Rwanda and other African countries.
Dark Heart is a thrilling tale of three people, a doctor, a lawyer and a photojournalist, whose fates are bound by their shared experience in the aftermath of the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
Although the novel is a work of fiction, it’s based on the mystery of who shot down the Rwandan president’s private aircraft which is the real-life event believed to have started the genocide.
‘‘I spent six months interviewing in person and by email the military, survivors and civilian media who were there,’’ Park said.
‘‘Their stories are more harrowing than any story in a book and their stories really stuck with me.
‘‘Examining the genocide and its causes I thought it might make for an interesting, if confronting, novel.’’
Despite the story being about a time of death and destruction, the tale also includes a strong message of hope.
‘‘Although 1994 was a dark time, the country has managed to reconcile its problem between the two major tribes,’’ Park said.
‘‘It’s now a peaceful, attractive and well organised country.
‘‘It showed a cause for hope and the human spirit which is present in the story.’’
Details: Castle Hill Library, 14 Pennant Street, Castle Road, Castle Hill.