Tag Archive: australia



The Alien Within: Book 2 of The Alien ChroniclesThe Alien Within: Book 2 of The Alien Chronicles by Robin Martin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I think I like this book better than the first one. There was a little more sanity and well thought out decisions made. Of course, there was a little teen angst but it seemed the major characters thought with true love and caring for the object of the love.

The author chose to go into the heads of the major characters to give the reader insight into their souls. I think I would have loved this book as a teen. I liked it a lot as an adult.

The ending came far too soon but at the appropriate time. I can’t wait to read the next book! I’d love to see the author take us to the cloud to meet the other aliens that were still in their own form and see how this Alien turned human affects their thoughts and ways of living.

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Seven Little Australians (Woolcots, #1)Seven Little Australians by Ethel Turner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Okay, this took me over half a year to read. (Small font) Only today did I see this is free in Kindle format on Amazon. To think I could have read it in a couple days!

This edition is the hardback and is a BookCrossing treasure. BCID: 813-3620880. It will be traveling back to the friends that sent it to me. It will be back with The Diaries of Ethel Turner by Ethel Turner which I read last year.

If you get the chance to read these books, give them a try. I liked reading the author’s diaries first. I was more aware of how much of this fictional book came from her real life. It also helped me get acquainted with the author’s writing style and historical events in Australia. And it helped me learn the lingo of the time and place.

With so many characters (7+) it is a little hard to keep track of who is who. Especially the younger kids. A list of characters would have been handy. But I managed. In fact, I became quite happy when it was about Judy.

Without spoilers, I wanted to throw the book in the trash and never look at it again on the penultimate chapter. But my curiosity got the better of me and I finished the book. Bittersweet is how I can describe the last two chapters. Overall, I think it was a nice read. I highly recommend others read it to expand horizons. 🙂

[edited] I just read on my BookCrossing page that I had read this in 2007. I do not remember that! Funny that I used the same work “Bittersweet” to describe it back then. Good thing there was a note about it. I guess because my eyes are so much worse and it took me so long I didn’t feel the energy of the book. And now I have the Kindle version so if I forget again I can reread quickly. LOL!

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The Diaries of Ethel TurnerThe Diaries of Ethel Turner by Ethel Turner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I don’t know that any book of my entire life has taken me this long to read. But this wasn’t fiction. This was someone’s diary. It was the day by day mind meanderings of a writer who lived in Australia in the 1800s. No protagonist, no antagonist, no plot. Even so, far better than my own diaries in which I would eventually give up and write that I breathed in and out that day. So I doubt anyone will write anything about mine. They have probably begun to degrade into the earth like the trees the paper was made from.

Another reason it was such a slow read for me was the small font. Luckily the entries were kept short so I would only sit and read an entry and let it go.

Writers will find this interesting, seeing Ethel Turner’s passion for writing, especially for children. Those interested in history, this diary takes place before the first world war. She witnessed world happenings from the land down-under. As a young woman, she sees Women’s Suffrage. At first, she sees no sense in it but as she matures her writing reflects the need for social change for men and women for more equality.

I found that interesting in that in the home she grows up in as a teen, they have servants. No wonder she sees no need for equality. She was able to spend her time studying languages, piano, and singing. Her life was full of social amenities, dances, etc. But still, she spends most of her days working on writing. She was and for me is an inspiration.

Seven Little Australians, her book, I will be reading next.

This is worth the effort it took me to read. Maybe you will like it, too.
Oh, this is a BookCrossing book BCID 128-5141612. Not sure who is next for the read but I’ll mark the site accordingly.

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Bluewater Walkabout: Into Africa, Finding Healing Through TraumaBluewater Walkabout: Into Africa, Finding Healing Through Trauma by Tina Dreffin

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Just couldn’t get into this book. There were some adventures I enjoyed, but not the rest. Sorry, I couldn’t come up with more to say about the book. But maybe you’ll enjoy it more.

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Desert Places: A Woman's Odyssey with the Wanderers of the Indian DesertDesert Places: A Woman’s Odyssey with the Wanderers of the Indian Desert by Robyn Davidson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Whew! I am glad to be finished reading this book. Not that the writing was poor or that I hated the author. Quite the opposite. Having just finished Robyn Davidson’s ‘Tracks’ about her trek across Australia, I wanted more. So when I saw this book was free with Kindle Unlimited I grabbed it. And as tortuous as the book was to read, I am glad I read it.

If someone were to ask me where I’d least like to go to visit, India would be at the top of the list. Too many people, too caste-set. But before you get on a high horse and tell me what for, I will allow that I never would have wanted to go to Alaska either. But I loved that trip so much! There isn’t a day I don’t think of the beauty and wonder of that cold world. So if the opportunity came, I think I would go to India. Just to see for myself if I could be won over.

But this book didn’t help my prejudices resolve. In fact, it all became worse. With each chapter, I was more and more depressed for the author. This was not her favorite trek. As a woman, a feminist, India isn’t a place to show your independence. Robyn is both and thereby found her way blocked at every turn.

Look, I wanted to give this book five stars. The writing is that good. But how can one rate highly a book that makes one miserable? The saving grace? Camels! I have learned to love these creatures through Ms. Davidson’s eyes. Okay, up from three to four stars. Let India’s rich, corrupted men see that lack of a star as a judgement of them. I challenge them to prove otherwise.

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TracksTracks by Robyn Davidson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh, how I hated to see the end of this story. I absolutely loved it! I was lucky enough to pick it up on Kindle Unlimited. Then I saw that there was an Audible version. I bought that. I’m glad I did. I loved listening to Angie Milliken tell me the story. Even though the KU went back to Amazon, I still have the story to listen to again, later.

When I was a girl, at the zoo, I was talking to a camel and he spit at me. Yuck! I hated camels ever since. But between Robyn Davidson’s story and Angie Milliken’s voice I wish I could be around camels, make friends with them.

This is the first book in a long time that I didn’t try to fast forward. There’s no speed reading about a trek across Australia. It was a long hike. I wanted to relish every word of it. If I can’t do the trek myself I will absorb the experience vicariously.

Being alone, Robyn shared her inner conflicts along the track. These were worries about the world in general or psychological problems. Both were discussed with frankness. She alternately shared wonders of Australia’s splendor or the barren rottenness, left overs of the non-ecologically sound non-natives. All the while keeping up with her four camels and her dog.

Shoot! This review doesn’t go near the wonder I felt as I read and listened to it. If you get the chance, please pick of a copy for yourself. I look forward to seeing the movie!

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Paint Stop Boom
Paint Stop Boom by Anna Sarelas
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Are you looking for something different? THIS is it! I don’t even know where to start with this book. I have had this on my to-read shelf for a couple years. To be honest the picture of a bomb on the cover kept me from reading it. Then, somehow, I had it mixed up with another book with a similar title that I had read a few pages and decided it wasn’t for me at the time. So… I have been trying to go through my lists and finding the oldest books recommended by authors. I know. My bad! But I would like to catch up with newer read-for-review books.

Can you tell I am putting off talking about this book? I still have no idea what to say about it. I finished it last night with enough time to start my next read. I couldn’t stay with the thoughts of this review no matter how hard I tried.

Impression: My shoulderblades and arms hurt from reading this book. If you read it it might affect you that way.

You have to put realism on the shelf with this one. There ya go, let it go. That done, I liked the characters, a lot. I grew to love them all, faults and all. Anna Sarelas had a way of writing that kept me reading, kept me caring. I loved her poetic flair. All my senses were involved engaging emotions most books don’t go near.

YET… I still couldn’t love it. Not sure who would. As a writer, I feel richer from reading this book, again, for the good and the bad. There were editing issues here and there, not enough to interrupt the read. Prose that made me sit up and notice. Prose that made me wish I could write like that. I probably won’t forget this book. Yet, I can only say I liked it. I didn’t love it. I challenge you all to read it to see what you think.

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