On a hot summer's night in the 1950s, the old and the new, diesel and steam, and town and country all collide - and nobody will be left unaffected. As a passenger train leaves Spencer Street Station on its haul to Sydney, a family of three - Vic, Rita, and their son, Michael - are off to a party. George Bedser has invited the whole neighborhood to celebrate the engagement of his daughter. Vic is an engine driver, with dreams of being like his hero Paddy Ryan and becoming the master of the smooth ride. As the neighbors walk to the party, the story delves into the lives of a bully, a drunk, a restless girl, and a young boy forced to grow up before he is ready. The Art of the Engine Driver is a luminous and evocative tale of ordinary suburban lives, told with an extraordinary power and depth.