There are things in his past that Harry Bascombe definitely doesn’t want to remember. But when a nosy journalist with a taste for scandal turns up out of the blue, be is forced to confront his memories…
An uncertain and diffident boy, Harry struggles to survive a suburban upbringing in the 1950s — the era of Menzies and the menace of Reds under the bed, the excitement of the Melbourne Olympics and the arrival of television in Australia. Family life is complicated for Harry, and school no easier. However hard young Harry tries to stay out of trouble, it seems he is always ‘asking for it’ — or so his teachers and schoolmates seem to think. Unwittingly, Harry becomes trapped in a spiral of violence and intimidation that he can neither understand nor resist.
Darkly funny and brutally frank, Asking for Trouble is a surprisingly tender and moving novel about the corrosive power of secrets and the consequences of standing up to bullies.
“Asking For Trouble is a witty and assured debut. Peter Timms’s stylish novel offers a coming of age story that is also a perceptive exploration of the darkness in a nation’s soul.” — Michelle de Kretser
In 2008 Peter completed a book on history of Hobart, In Search of Hobart, for the University of New South Wales Press.
Peter compiled an anthology of essays on gardening titled The Nature of Gardens, released by Allen & Unwin in 1999. Among the contributors to this lively and unique collection are Marion Halligan, Margaret Scott, George Sedden and Alan Saunders.
His next book, Making Nature, combines personal memoir and natural history to explore Thoreau’s conviction that the whole world can be revealed in our own backyard. It was published by Allen & Unwin in 2001.
What’s Wrong With Contemporary Art? was published by the University of New South Wales Press in 2004.
Australia’s Quarter Acre: The Story of the Ordinary Suburban Garden was published by Melbourne University Press in 2006, and Private Lives: Australian at Home Since Federation was published in 2008.
Peter was for many years the editor of the journal Art Monthly. In 1986 Oxford University Press published his definitive volume Australian Studio Pottery and China Painting.