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Interview

Brisbane authors p3

Good book recommendations from Richard J. Carroll, Lorna Gregory and Janet Reid…

Richard J. Carroll’s novel Turrwan is based on Tom Petrie and his memoirs of the early days of what is now the city of Brisbane. Tom Petrie arrives in the penal colony of Moreton Bay, half way up the east coast of Australia, at the age of six, with his parents in 1837. He befriends the local Aboriginal people, the Turrbal, and goes on long treks with them. But it’s a violent world in the convict settlement. And there is conflict between the Aborigines and Europeans: and Tom Petrie has enemies on both sides.
Mr Carroll liked Colleen McCullough’s books on Romans, like The First Man in Rome and Caesar. The first novel in the series is The First Man in Rome. This is the story of Marius, who is wealthy but lowborn, and Sulla, a poor aristocrat. They are ambitious and lay the foundations of the Roman Empire.
Mr Carroll also liked Tony Park’s books on Africa like The Delta. After a failed attempt at assassination of the Zimbabwean president, Sonja Kurtz flees to the Okavango Delta, to leave her warrior lifestyle behind. But she is recruited by an eco-commando to try to halt a project that threatens the survival of the Delta.
Lorna Gregory is the author of Miss Minnie the Frantic Poodle, a children’s story about a poodle left behind by her family, and who goes in search of a new home. Ms Gregory liked The Cinder Path by Catherine Cookson, which is a WW1 novel about a working class protagonist with a tyrannical father, a problematic marriage, and a secret he has to keep hidden at all costs. Ms Gregory also liked the British mystery tv series Foyles War. Born in 1939 to a Sydney family, at an early age Ms Gregory would accompany her father on his mobile library rounds and visiting book wholesalers. I hope Ms Gregory writes a book about this because it sounds like an interesting time.
Janet Reid is the author of Granny Rags, a suspenseful book for boys and girls about age 12. Tim Trickett moves to a country town with his parents. He makes a friend Lockie, and later meets Granny Rags, (Mrs Ragsdale) a lonely old woman rumoured to be a witch. The two form a friendship, but Mrs Ragsdale has enemies and there is danger brewing. Ms Reid liked Tomorrow When the War Began by John Marsden. This is a young adult novel about the invasion of Australia by a foreign power, and the guerilla war waged by the narrator Ellie Linton and her teenage friends in their hometown of Wirrawee. Ms Reid also liked author James Moloney.