The ever growing To Be Read pile

My christmas gifts are now moved down to the middle of the pile. (Except Infinity – that review is underway.)

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Books by authors are now moved to the top

  • J. P. Pomade’s Call Me Evil
  • Michael Botur’s True? Short Stories
  • Derryn Pittar’s two short stories by now with the publisher of the collection
  • authors who found me on Twitter… Never underestimate that medium

Old favourites to re-read have moved right down at the bottom.

Expect reviews as soon as…

 

 

Reviewing “Irish in the Blood”, by Marie Gray

A Family History – rediscoveredpic20171207_05

This is the story of a family before and after emigrating to New Zealand in 1887, and is the answer to the question Marie and indeed her uncles and aunts often asked her grandfather (their uncle), to which the answer was an infuriating “Tell you one day.”

After his passing, Marie’s husband encouraged her to travel back to Ireland to find answers. She did so, and more. After receiving only hints of knowledge during her visit, she returned to New Zealand and began a full journey of research, aided by her grandmother’s journal, kept whilst travelling on the powered steamer Cuzco under Captain Murdoch.

pic20171207_07Husband and wife Patrick Magill and Mary-Jane (née Campbell) sailed with their children James (Jim), Mary, Robert (Bob) and Annie, heading to South Africa (Capetown), then east to Australia (Melbourne). There they took the Governor Arthur up the Yarrow River, to visit with Uncle Jack, who had travelled out some years before to try his luck at the gold fields. After losing his friend, he settled to the land, now a flourishing homestead.

The Magills shipped to New Zealand aboard the Arawata, arriving in the Hawke Bay Ahuriri port close to Napier.

Published 1997, by Hodder Moa Beckett Publishers Limited, Auckland, NZ
ISBN: 1-86958-481-3

“When Dad Comes Home” a new release

The war was over and Dad is coming home at last! But the days and weeks go by, andWhen Dad Came Home when he does return, Dad is not the happy man that young Rita once knew and Thomas thinks he remembers.
Struggling to understand his sadness and fears, the kids accompany him as he readjusts to home life, all the while singing his favourite song. One day, while they help him fix the deck, Dad starts to join in the song …

Hatley-Owen beautifully captures children’s views of the return from the war, and the realities of shell shock for the men who returned after the First World War ended on 11 November 1918. Soldiers who returned from the war often faced difficulty re-entering society after the horrors they had faced on the battlefield. Most never spoke about their experiences and managed to carry on as before. However, many men faced on-going psychological trauma.

Not only affecting the soldiers, but their families too, the story shows that not all soldiers return unharmed from war, and not all wounds are physical. But with love, care and support, they can heal.

 

Illustrated by Rosie Colligan, England
Published: November 2018 by Oratia Media, 2018
ISBNs: 0947506500 and 9780947506506
Available from Amazon  and from all New Zealand book stores


portrait_Vanessa H-O

Visit Vanessa at her web site – and on facebook:

 

A Fresh Start

I sort of retired from editing for a while there. Now, I am resuming helping writers get to being published authors – albeit on a smaller scale, serving local clients.

Although I still face the dreaded writers’ block – or a total ennui regarding creating work of my own, I do look forward to proofing a writer’s manuscript, formatting it ready for print or epublishing, and assisting with marketing media.

I have to thank all the authors and publishers, and writing groups, with whom/which I’ve worked in the past. “You don’t know what you’ve got, ’till it’s gone.”

 

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

 

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