When his older brother asks him if he is gay, Jacques is first stunned by the question.
Soon after he’s come out, Jacques leaves behind the idyllic island of Mauritius, and embarks on a journey of self-discovery.
First stop Paris, where he lives grandly for a time, before his life takes a twist and he finds himself squatting in a less salubrious part of the French capital.
Next stop Cyprus, where Jacques reinvents himself as a teacher. He then survives war-torn Lebanon, and heeds the counsel of a generous Australian benefactor who encourages him to make Sydney his next destination.
There, things don’t go according to script. And before long Jacques is confronted by numerous setbacks. But he is resolute, and manages to overcome adversity, eventually finds true love, and ends up in the most liveable city in the world.
This is a poignant story of resilience and hope. Jacques’ narrative in this autobiographical novel is simple and powerful. Despite the challenges, he finds fulfilment, happiness and success, living the life he wanted.
Born in London from Mauritian parents, Jacques grew up on the Indian Ocean island. He studied Economics at University College London and the Institute of Development Studies in Sussex England before returning to Mauritius to work as a Project Analyst for three years in the 80s. Jacques went on to live in France and Cyprus, spending a couple of years in each country, before immigrating to Australia. There he embarked on a distinguished public service career.
In the 90s, Jacques moved from Sydney to Melbourne, where he's resided for over twenty years now, with his long-time partner. He took an early retirement to dedicate himself to writing and his other passion, seeing the world.
Jacques' travels feature prominently in this autobiographical novel as he tells his personal story. But, above all, Jacques provides a valuable insight into his own life-journey, recounting it with the poise and sensitivity of the natural writer he's always been.