Peter Clancy is a hard-drinking, hard-living journalist for the Melbourne Truth newspaper. He is unscrupulous in getting the dirt on society figures for the salacious stories the scandal sheet publishes. Upon hearing of the death of his mother in the outback Queensland town of Clarke's Flat, Peter returns to see to her affairs. He plans a quick trip to his childhood home, and aims to return to Melbourne within a few days. But things don't go according to his plan.
In Clarke's Flat, Peter meets several of his childhood friends and acquaintances who draw him into the sinister secrets of this outback town. His childhood friend, Dave Tindall, is now a police constable in the town. With Sam Saturday, an erstwhile Aboriginal stockman on the former Clancy cattle station, Dave convinces Peter to help him prove the suicides of Dave's father and his business partner were actually murders.
Peter's quest for evidence will stir up more than he bargained for- including his own shameful past. Will Peter Clancy succumb to despair and bolt, or will he expose Clarke's Flat sins and despotism and claim his own redemption.