In Whom We Trust, John Clanchy

“One of Australia’s most stimulating contemporary writers.” Canberra Times

Although set a hundred years ago, John Clanchy’s new novel powerfully captures the devastating and persistent reality of a fundamental flaw in the role of our major institutions. Central to In Whom We Trust is James Pearse, an essentially good but circumstantially weak man, who is forced to examine his role at the St Barnabas Home for Children, an orphanage that has betrayed the individuals entrusted to its care. He must face the devastating wider consequences of a life of moral equivocation.

Clanchy has been writing fiction for forty years—In Whom We Trust is his twelfth book—and has won numerous local, state, national and international awards for his novels, novellas and short stories.


246pp $28.00 Paperback with dust jacket

“That Clanchy can make such subject matter both engrossing and deeply moving is down to his writing and his understanding of humanity. In Whom We Trust is a powerful and wonderful read.” Whispering Gums

“There is a quiet discipline to this art that resists the potentially sensational nature of its subject.” Australian Book Review

“If the content in this deeply moral, and quietly devastating, period drama feels utterly topical, the atmosphere, dialogue and characters are all imagined with a flair for historical authenticity.” Pick of The Week, Sydney Morning Herald


Some review comments on Clanchy’s broader writing:

“Clanchy presents moral dilemmas with a clear eye… He writes as if both words and people are important to him.” The Age

“Clanchy has …psychological acuity, stylistic variety and an unpretentious and justified confidence in his story-telling gifts.” The Canberra Times, Brisbane Times

“…moments of humour form a perfect counterbalance to the more serious content found… Expertly told, without a false note.” Australian Book Review

“Writing that glows with the reassuring light of Clanchy’s compassion and humanity.” The West Australian

“Flawless and heartbreaking…” The Weekend Australian

“Tough, true, funny and poignant…” Australian Book Review