Sunday, 27 December 2015

Dingo Tails: Kane Guy

I have never read a book on any subject that contained such a wealth of knowledge in a series of short stories by so many different writers.

Dingoes Tails was the concept of Kane Guy a teacher, writer, husband, father of three, and absolute dingo admirer.

With the publication of Dingo Tails Kane hopes to paint a new picture of the dingo in the eyes of everyday Australians; that by the end of the book the reader will be able to see through the indoctrination of media sensationalism and appreciate the true beauty of the dingo through its many endearing and truly unique qualities.

The stories often tell of an immense reciprocated love; of Dreamtime legends, of people breaking the law, battling differences in legislation between states and challenges of having a dingo in the home.

They will make you laugh at dingo antics and ingenuity.  They will make you cry with stories about the dingoes sensitivity and loyalty and through the verbal images of the cruelty the dingo has endured for over 200 years.

Mostly they tell how beautiful and spiritual the dingo is and how it is different to a domestic dog.

It contains beautiful and emotional descriptions of the love between dingoes and humans; at least those humans who take the time to understand and love an animal who could be described as the most misunderstood and maligned.

The stories are not just written by people who live with dingoes or care for them in the wild and in sanctuaries. They are also written by environmentalists, scientists, overseas visitors and even a farmer who welcomes dingoes onto his property. They are all written by people who love dingoes. To take one quote from the book that summarises the emotion of living with a dingo: “To say we love dingoes cannot encapsulate our feelings for them.” Stories from Koru by Tanya Hancock.

I know many people skip the Preface of a book and it is rare that I would make special mention of it in a review but, in this case it is essential reading. It introduces the Dingo as an Australian Native, its history since white settlement and the gradual war between graziers and the dingo. It discusses the still unsolved question of where dingoes originated from, their life and social structure, role as an apex predator, its important role in maintaining balance in the ecosystem and the need for a change in legislation to protect the Dingo. It is written in a fresh, easy to read style without rehashing the same old words and phrases. It is essential reading to start having an understanding of the Dingo.

The most beautifully written piece in the book is in the story ‘At the Centre of All Things’ by Joshua Said:

…… their warm eyes stare into your soul, communicating messages that can’t be spoken. It’s something incorruptible, something indelible, something ancient that has preceded us, yet something that we know full well. It’s a bond of partnership, a promise to always love and protect; to provide and share. A unique and enduring companionship that is as old as the hills in this land, as old as its first people.

Legend since the Dreaming, the Dingo’s place has not changed in the wild hearts of the men and women who love them. Respected and admired, loved and appreciated, the bond and the spiritual exchange of unexplainable values are lifelong in its entirety, and moment by moment in its expression.

Love is, with the Dingo, at the centre of all things. Love of freedom, love of life, love of family and love of duty and commitment. Loyal and faithful to their kin, to the death they prove their love. Ephemeral only is their beating heart, that one day will return to the earth from which it was made. But their love, their love is an icon in this rugged and tough land that proves to endure through all places, in all things, no matter the persecution or the ultimate cost.
Through drought and fire, flood and rain, snow and ice they can be found. And wherever they are in this Land Down Under, the story is the same – to love them is to know them, and to know them is to love them.

I sincerely hope this book gets into print. It deserves to be displayed in every book shop and every library. Maybe then Australia will wake up and accept the Dingo as a vital native animal of this vast country.

Where to buy the eBook:

For the ePub version

My rating 5/5* but it deserves more

Friday, 20 November 2015

Christmas Confessions and Cocktails by Vicki Lesage

Another great read from my American girlfriend living in France. I don’t know Ms Lesage personally but that is how all her books make you feel.

Vicki herself best describes her latest book. As she says in her introduction she has taken two things she loves – Christmas and cocktails – thrown them in a martini shaker, and mixed up a fun, seasonal collection. Each story has its own cocktail recipe themed to the story.

Vicki’s previous books mostly covered her life in France but this collection is reflective of Christmas’s past in both France and USA. They are a balanced collection of funny, happy and sad stories; all told in her honest, open way.

This is a more mature Vicki than we met in her earlier books, motherhood can do that to a party girl, but she is still able to tell a good yarn and laugh at herself.

Reading Christmas Confessions and Cocktails got me reflecting on my own Christmas’ and the funny, happy and sad, past and present family members I shared them with.

While I read the Kindle edition I am very pleased the book is also available in print. A Kindle book as a Christmas present just isn’t the same as the real thing.

If you haven’t already read Vicki Lesage’s earlier ‘confession’ books it won’t spoil the fun in this edition (but you have missed some great light reading)

A few of the stories are repeats from previous books but hey! It’s Christmas. Time to put your feet up and enjoy some fun, light reading – with cocktail in hand of course! I avoided the temptation to try each cocktail as I finished each chapter which is probably just as well because I do most of my reading early in the morning.

My only disappointment was that living in Australia I was not familiar with some of the ingredients. That means I can only try about 20 of the recipes this Christmas instead of all 25.

Living in a climate with a hot Christmas I’ve bookmarked Badajoz Sangria to serve my family this Christmas and even with our warm climate it won’t stop me trying the ‘white’ Christmas ones. Oh and for those like me that live in a ‘metric measurement’ country – get out your metric converter so you don’t spoil the final product.

Cheers Vicki! And Merry Christmas.  

This book was provided to me for free for an honest and unbiased review.

My rating 5* as a good read and 5* as a Christmas gift

Sunday, 1 November 2015

New Book by Berencie Walters and Pamela King

This is the story of the love Berenice Walters had for her Dingoes and her endeavours to prove they were not the savage and sinister brute authorities portrayed them as.

The stories in this book are about three of her Dingoes; Dora, Napoleon and Snowgoose. 

They tell how she acquired her first Dingo, eluded being arrested and her Dingo being destroyed then successfully obedience training her Dingoes. They tell how she proved the so called experts wrong about the character of the Dingo but mostly they tell of her love and dedication for the most falsely maligned of Australian native animals.

Australian buyers can purchase through the website with Paypal. Price $18.65 including postage (within Australia only)

Overseas buyers can purchase through Amazon.  

Berenice Walters was known as the Dingo Lady

She devoted over 30 years of her life as the Dingo’s advocate. Through commitment to observing, studying, breeding and being at one with the dingo’s spirit she became a recognised authority on Australia’s Native Dog.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

High Country Secrets by Jane Carter

I am not going to dwell on the story line of this book; other reviewers have already done that. I always feel that the book’s official blurb and what other reviewers have to say give enough indication of the story line. I prefer to focus on what I liked and disliked about a book to help a potential reader decide if it is for them or not.

Firstly, I rarely read romance but after reading High Country Secrets must admit a romance writer can tell just as good a yarn as any other fiction writer.

The most outstanding aspect of the book I liked was the amazing descriptions of a part of my country that I love.

The beautiful descriptions capture wonderful images of the Australian countryside “ghostly white snow gums….always gave her the shivers”; “fenceposts on their march across bald landscape”; “Rangy clouds were etched in a fiery spread over the western sky” are just a few of the many word images throughout the book

I also congratulate Ms Carter on bringing relevant local issues into what would normally be considered a somewhat gentle genre. Two important background stories impact on Jessie and Michael’s relationship.

The first concerns the take over and influence brought upon farmers by big supermarket chains. These chains then turn around and buy products from overseas, deserting the original producers. This is a very real and important issue impacting on rural Australia.

The other is post war European migration, a significant turning point in Australian history, with its traditions and “different” ways and that had a considerable impact on the Australian way of life.

By including these topics the author adds substance to her romance story and takes it beyond a simple tale of romance.

The main story line, the romance, has just enough mystery, charm, on again off again relationships and some sensual moments to keep the reader turning the pages.

This book was provided to me for free for an honest and unbiased review.

My rating 4*

Monday, 21 September 2015

Wisdom from the Web by C. A. Broadribb

Cute, light and amusing is the way I would best describe Wisdom from the Web. It is an amusing look at the autocomplete function of Google search. The author then adds fictional characters of who might undertake searches on a wide range of topics giving the whole book a series of personalities

It’s one of those fun, quick read books that will make you smile however, I feel it is better suited to print than as an eBook. In print form it would make a great gift.

This book was provided to me for free for an honest and unbiased review.

My rating 3*