The Glass Kingdom

Text Publishing (2014)

Ben and his sidekick, Mikey, work the Target Ball stand in a ramshackle carnival travelling up the east coast. Ben is trying to put his time in the army behind him and make some money. Mikey—AKA Mekong Delta, Fremantle’s answer to Fifty Cent—wants to work on his flow and impress girls.

Their marks are the boozed-up blokes wandering sideshow alley in the hope of winning fluffy toys for their girlfriends. Easy pickings—so long as Mikey keeps his big mouth shut. Especially since his tendency to start fights jeopardises Ben’s lucrative meth-dealing operation…


"The funniest tale I’ve read in many a year…The Glass Kingdom is best described, I think, as Alex Garland’s The Beach meets the bush, and will have you marvelling at Flynn’s extraordinary ear for the vernacular and wicked eye for small-town country Australia."


"Chris Flynn’s The Glass Kingdom has a whiff of Irvine Welsh’s drug-stream of consciousness and mindless violence, both brilliantly captured…a wild and satisfying ride."

NZ Listener

"Flynn is already one of our most playfully thoughtful novelists. On the basis of the gathering strengths of his two novels to date, he’s also on track to become one of our most interesting."

The Age/Sydney Morning Herald


It’s not like it’s impossible to win a prize. It’s just hard. There’s a certain technique to beating the game. All you have to do is land three balls in the same circle. The first one’s a bit of a shit, true dat, as Mikey would say. Nine times out of ten the throw bounces back out. That’s because there’s half a tennis ball glued to the rear of the board. But if you float it in there real slow and soft, it’ll rattle around some and stay put. Then you have to avoid hitting it with your second and third throws. Most people figure it out after a dozen balls or so. By then they’ve spent ten bucks and if they win a plush wallaby, well, I don’t give a shit. Money in the bank for me.