It’s a rare profile of Sydney writer Louis Nowra that fails to mention his long-term patronage of the Old Fitzroy Hotel in Woolloomooloo. It’s an easy journalistic go-to (and, as he reveals at one point in Woolloomooloo: A Biography, an easy guidebook go-to as well).
But as Nowra makes clear in this book, the pub, its regulars and the suburb they belong to are far more important to him than the profiles suggest. This isn’t merely somewhere he comes to meet his daily quota of four sauvignon blancs.
This is Nowra’s second bio of a Sydney suburb. Kings Cross: A Biography (2013) was more a eulogy for the suburb than a celebration of it. But Woolloomooloo is a heartfelt paean to the little suburb that could.