Tuesday 1 July 2014

July New Release

The Songs of Jesse Adams by Peter McKinnon (Acorn Press, 24 July 2014)

Set in the turmoil of social change and political unrest of Australia during the 1960s, The Songs of Jesse Adams traces the meteoric rise of a boy from the bush – a farmer’s son who breaks away to follow his heart, his dreams and his love of music. But, as Jesse travels with his band and the crowds gather, it becomes clear that something else is afoot. This rock singer captivates and transforms a host of fans who hear his songs and encounter his touch. 

Lives are changed in unexpected ways and the enigmatic Jesse becomes a symbol of hope and freedom for those on society’s edge. But not all will celebrate the rising tide of influence of this charismatic figure whose words and actions challenge those in power – the media, the politicians, the church. In one tumultuous week this clash of ideals comes to a head – with profound consequences. 

Awash in all the protest and collapse of conservative Australia, the colour and madness that was the sixties, The Songs of Jesse Adams is a tale of conflict, betrayal and tragedy, but ultimately the triumph of love.

Author Biography

For seventeen years, Peter McKinnon held senior roles in the frenzied world of high finance, the last five sitting at the top executive table of Australia’s then largest financial organisation, NAB, reporting directly to the CEO. As a psychologist working inside large organisations, he had spent a lifetime studying human behaviour and the way big companies work. Life was fast, privileged, exhilarating. 

Then, in one twenty-four-hour period, everything would change. The largest trading scandal in Australian financial services history would break and leave people, profits and reputations shattered in its wake. 

Disillusioned by what he had experienced, Peter stayed a year then cast himself adrift of corporate life. Then, a surprise phone call from a friend since childhood, World Vision Australia CEO Tim Costello, literally turned his world upside down once more, and he and his wife found themselves living and working on the other side of the world in Los Angeles and putting their hands to changing the lives of others around the world. Responsibility for forty thousand employees in over one hundred countries in the largest humanitarian NGO in the world, World Vision International, shifted his view of the world and underlined for Peter, once again, the importance living a life that made a difference to others. 

When he returned to Australia in late 2009, he determined to pursue a more creative and purposeful life and began to write. 

Decades earlier, with the help of his wife Julie (who had appeared for several years on the ABC television series Bellbird) he had written and produced an amateur musical on a similar theme to The Songs of Jesse Adams. Many thousands attended and celebrated what became an acclaimed local hit. 

Thirty years later, Peter, now a full-time writer, has re-imagined this musical in book form, The Songs of Jesse Adams which gives readers an engaging fantasy on what can happen when the unexpected lands on your doorstep ...


  1. Thanks for that Narelle. What a fascinating story. I wonder if it's based on an actual person? Peter certainly has a fascinating background with a mine of information.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Sounds interesting. Thanks Narelle for bringing it to our attention. I love how God changes lives!

  4. You ask an interesting question Rita! Perhaps there's more than meets the eye to this Jesse Adams...
    All will be revealed on my Sept 10 guest blog, but you would be VERY welcome to read the book ahead of that time ;-)

  5. And thank you for your words of encouragement Dale.

  6. Hi Peter, Congratulations on your upcoming book release! I'm also intrigued by the story premise and I'm looking forward to reading your September guest blog post.

  7. Thank you, Narelle! I appreciate your interest. It has been an interesting journey both personally and in the writing of the book. I look forward to sharing more.

  8. Looking forward to guest blogging on the book on 10 September!


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.