“Goodbye Crackernight” Book Review – Northern District Times 2 Dec
BACK WHEN BUNGERS AND ROCKETS LIT THE SKY – Words by Charis Chang, Photo by Brad Hunter.
Just mentioning the words Peach Moove, Sunnyboy and crackernight complete with skyrockets, bungers, po-hahs and Tom Thumbs can conjure up a sunny nostalgia that Justin Sheedy draws on in his book, Goodbye Crackernight.
Back in the 1970s when Sheedy grew up in Howard Place, North Epping, it was still best known for its proximity to the fireworks factory.
“I had such a lovely childhood, they were simpler times back then,” Sheedy said.
“In Crackernight I wanted to show the lovely simplicity of growing up in 1970s Epping and compare and contrast it to today,” he said.
Sheedy now lives in Surry Hills, after spending 20 years in Newtown, and has crafted a book that invites readers to jump on to their ten-speed Malvern Star bike and ride with him through the quiet streets of his youth.
“It’s strange, the book came about because of the instant enthusiasm I got from anyone in my generation when I mentioned crackernight,” Sheedy said.
“There were also the other minutiae of the time, ice blocks, simple games and riding bikes.”
It was also a time when Epping was considered “white bread”, far different to the multicultural community living in the suburb now.
For those who get a warm tingly feeling at the mere mention of television shows such as The Thunderbirds, Romper Room and Batman, Sheedy’s snapshot reminiscences and his funny insights into once-ubiquitous gadgets such as the Breville toasted sandwich maker will undoubtedly bring joy.
Goodbye Crackernight, priced at $24.95, is available at many independent bookshops including Banjo Books in Epping and on Kindle at Amazon.
Thanks to Charis Chang, Brad Hunter, and the Northern District Times.
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