Three new novels

Dry Season

‘Compulsive lost history…’

Portuguese Timor, 1967. Lonely young Macanese clerk David Pan is trying to find his place at the end of the earth. But to make Timorese friends in 1967 is to become entangled in the transition of power. As betrayal becomes the survival strategy, he must learn fast the unseen networks that connect people. Set under the shadow of invasion, Dry Season is at once a simple murder mystery and an extended hallucinatory meditation on time, culture and the individual.


‘An incandescent political thriller’

Timor Timur, 1981. Businessman Daniel Pan has discovered a disturbing souvenir from Indonesian-occupied Timor hidden in his suitcase. But is this the only secret he carries? Or does he hide other secrets from himself? Only by confronting a shameful past can he liberate the future. With its relentless brooding pace, Build-up achieves the velocity to punch through a moral black hole–a combustible mix of history and fiction.

Fear of Colour

‘Lessons rescued from darkness’

Timor Leste, 2006. The adults keep the good food for themselves, so what choice do the youth have but to rise up? When the state collapses it seems the past will be the key to the future as street-gangs, political cliques and veterans clash beneath the rise of a rebel force who takes the heights above the capital. A novel about struggle for renewal, the emergence of women from patronage and the possibility of justice, Fear of Colour will be finished in 2023.

A hand mirror to catch the sun.

Each book in this loose trilogy of busted genre novels may be read as stand alone – together they form a compelling x-ray of the twentieth century’s dark matter. Across an epic history, the outsider David Pan is witness to struggle from deep roots of colonialism and patriarchy to the fragile hopes of emancipation and independence. These novels flow from author Lee Hana’s years in Timor, balancing evocations of lost times with gripping storytelling and startling insights, to throw fireworks into the shadows of a history that has not yet been reconciled.


– is the author of three literary thrillers that hold Timor Leste’s tumultuous history as a mirror to modern times. The books come from experiences during the decade following Timor Leste’s independence, where the author spent four years on civic education and peace-building for the United Nations and European Union. An Australian, Lee has crossed different worlds, from the remnants of the post-war Japanese avant garde to the liberal nation-building era from Afghanistan to Nepal.