27 October 2009
Hotel Kerobokan -- Kathryn Bonella
Kathryn Bonella has released a new book through Pan Macmillan Australia, Hotel Kerobokan. According to the blurb on the Pan Macmillan site the book's release date for sale is 1 November 2009. I might have to trundle down to the nearest book store and grab me a copy. Until then I can only ponder what the book might include based on the release issued by Pan Macmillan and perhaps past performance.
Bonella helped Schapelle Corby co-write Schapelle's autobiography, My Story.
Hotel Kerobokan is the name, apparently, given to the Kerobohkan prison in Bali. Kerobokan is home for a good number of Australians, among them Schapelle Corby and the Bali Nine. The gist of the book, according to the blurb, is the fact that murderers sleep along side petty criminals, drugs and alcohol are freely available which in turn leads to devastating addictions, and guards who are on the take for all manner of things. The corruption of the place making it a hell hole.
The book focuses on the inmates stories of life on the inside of Kerobokan and the contrast to the holiday wonder world that is Bali, and which exists on the other side of the prison walls. The book should be a good read considering Bonella has apparently had daily access to the prison and the inmates for the purposes of gathering their stories. This suggests that the book was written with the full knowledge of the prison authorities if she has been granted this level of access to prisoners / inmates. So much so, that the Pan Macmillan review states that "the truth about Hotel Kerobokan explodes off the page."
To get the readers in, the review ends with, "Hotel Kerobokan paints a confronting picture. Everything you've heard is true. And there's much, much more than you ever imagined there could be."
The spiel on the author over at Pan Macmillan is this:
Since studying journalism at RMIT in Melbourne, Kathryn Bonella has worked as a journalist in television and print. She moved to London 18 months after graduating and spent several years freelancing for 60 Minutes as well as numerous English and American television programs, magazines and newspapers. She returned to Australia in 2000 to work as a full-time producer for 60 Minutes. She moved to Bali in 2005 to research and write Schapelle Corby's autobiography, My Story.
On a side note. I have been taking a fair bit of flak on another thread on this blog about Robin Tampoe (here), as seemingly anyone who writes a blog that includes posts on Schapelle Corby must be doing it because they are motivated by the prospect of making money off of her misery in Kerobokan. I can state unequivocally that I have made no money of posts about Schapelle Corby. This blog is not a commercial venture in a money making sense.
However, I wonder whether anyone would similarly question Bonella's motivations by suggesting that she is capitalizing on the misery of those whom she interviews for Hotel Kerobokan.
In the bigger scheme of things, I wonder how the sordid details and descriptions of squalor that are apparently the focus of the book benefit those that remain behind Kerobokan's bars. This is particularly so if some of those interviewed have been expressly candid regarding the conditions of the prison and the manner in which it is run.
My final point of wondering here is whether Schapelle Corby has been re-interviewed for this book. I am particularly interested in what she has to say considering there is a growing movement seeking to have her released on the grounds of her ongoing depression and claims of innocence.
As I said, I will head down to the bookshop and see if I can get a copy, unless Pan Macmillan or Bonella would like to send me an advance copy for me to review?