Tag Archives: Australian author

The Happiest Refugee April 01

April online ebook club – The Happiest Refugee by Anh Do

This month we’re reading The Happiest Refugee, Comedian Anh Do’s very memoir about growing up in Australia as a refugee from Vietnam. Anh Do and his family fled war-torn Vietnam on an overcrowded boat when he was 2 years old. On arrival in Australia the family worked hard to make ends meet while adjusting to their new life. When Anh was 13, his father left his mother and this loss was felt deeply. Despite this the family maintained their sense of humour and Anh went onto graduate university with a law degree and become one of Australia’s most popular Comedians.

Grace’s table

 To commemorate becoming a septuagenarian Grace’s table bustles with the presence of twelve guests. As family and close friends share a birthday meal to celebrate Grace’s grand milestone, memories and recollections occupy Grace’s thoughts and a disturbing undercurrent of simmering angst begins to boil to the surface amongst the family. Her son is there with […]

White Gardenia

Our book club thoroughly enjoyed  White Gardenia by Belinda Alexandra. When we first meet the heroine of the novel, Anya, she is a 13 year old  living with her mother Alina Kozlova in Harbin, a haven for White Russian families since the Russian communist revolution. Their life together is shattered during the final days of […]

The Torch by Peter Twohig

This is the sequel to Twohig’s The Cartographer, which I enjoyed but wasn’t convinced, The Torch however I loved. Set in the early 1960’s in a fictional Richmond, Melbourne  – my home town and I do like to read novel set in places I have lived and/or loved. The story is narrated by a 12 […]

That’s why I WROTE THIS Song by Susanne Gervay reviewed by Jill Smith

This is a great book. Susanne wrote this book with massive input from her daughter Tory who wrote the songs. The cover is such a fresh faced girl with the band silhouette at the bottom, I loved this image as it encapsulates the story so well. It’s very thought provoking. How do families cope with […]

Crashing down by Kate McCaffrey reviewed by Jill Smith

Lucy is in year 12 and getting ready for her final exams. Party time, she is waiting for her boyfriend Carl to pick her up. Everything in her life is going well. She is certain she’ll get the grades she wants so she can go to Uni. Carl is a bit smothering and she thinks […]

Butterflies by Susanne Gervay reviewed by Jill Smith

http://www.sgervay.com Katherine is nearly eighteen and just wants to be like everyone else. She was severely burnt at age 3 and has undergone many operations to get her to where she is. Will she ever be able to wear her hair up? Should she put her head in a bag as one boy said in […]

Destroying Avalon by Kate McCaffrey reviewed by Jill Smith

http://www.katemccaffrey.com This is a book that gets to the heart of cyber bullying. Like the screech of nails down a blackboard (an old school analogy I know) the feeling of alienation, abuse and anxiety Avalon felt was palpable. I was worried from the first sentence, and screamed early on, ‘tell someone’. Her parents are teachers, […]

Gamers’ Quest Trilogy by George Ivanoff reviewed by Jill Smith

George clearly knows computer games and his target YA’s market. On his website he has some truly tempting book trailers for each book. Gamers’ Quest won a 2010 Chronos Award for speculative fiction, both Gamers’ Challenge and Gamers’ Rebellion are on the Victorian Premier’s and NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge booklists. Gamers’ Quest: Readers of this […]

Hello from the Gillespies by Monica McInerney

Each year, on December 1st, Angela Gillespie sends her end of year letter “Hello from the Gillespies” to family and friends around the world. For a tradition spanning over thirty years, Angela can now almost write it in her sleep … always keeping it cheerful and highlighting the many achievements involving her husband, herself, three […]

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