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The Returned

Reading Rewards - reviews -

The Returned by Jason Mott
Narrated by Tom Stechschulte.

From the cover:  Harold and Lucille Hargrave’s lives have been both joyful and sorrowful in the decades since their only son, Jacob, died tragically at his eighth birthday party in 1966. In their old age they’ve settled comfortably into life without him. Until one day Jacob mysteriously appears on their doorstep, still eight years old. All over the world people’s loved ones are returning from beyond. No one knows how or why this is happening, whether it’s a miracle or a sign of the end. Not even Harold and Lucille can agree on whether the boy is real or a wondrous imitation, but one thing they know for sure: he’s their son. As chaos erupts around the globe, the newly reunited Hargrave family finds itself at the centre of a mysterious new reality that threatens to unravel the very meaning of what it is to be human.

I haven’t seen the TV show, but the trailer for it caught my eye, so when this appeared on our Bolinda audio site I thought I’d check it out.  Don’t worry, I haven’t included any spoilers if you are currently watching it! 

If you’re are looking for the reason why the dead are returning, or how they return, or are asking yourself if they came from the grave how do they manage to be (a) clean, (b) in the same physical shape as they were before they died or (c) what if they were cremated, and (d) a zillion other questions this book engenders, then give up now.  There are no explanations for anything that occurs.  Talk about frustrating, you just have to accept the premise that the dead are returning and get on with it! 

This quirky story doesn’t really end anywhere, it just meanders its slow Southern grind to a very predictable halt "is all" [how many times do they say that!!] …  however, when you listen to the author’s note at the end you can finally see what he was trying to portray.  The whole trouble is by the time you realise what it is, you’ve probably hurled your book out the window.  And I've only just noticed - on the Bolinda site, it says 'The Returned' - Book 1.  More to come?  
Deb

The Masterful Mr. Montague

Reading Rewards - reviews -

The Masterful Mr. Montague by Stephanie Laurens

From the cover:  Montague has devoted his life to managing the wealth of London's elite, but at a huge cost: a family of his own. Then the enticing Miss Violet Matcham seeks his help, and in the puzzle she presents him, he finds an intriguing new challenge professionally and personally. Violet, devoted lady-companion to the aging Lady Halstead, turns to Montague to reassure her ladyship that her affairs are in order. But the famous Montague is not at all what she'd expected - this man is compelling, decisive, supportive, and strong - everything Violet needs in a champion, a position to which Montague rapidly lays claim. But then Lady Halstead is murdered and Violet and Montague, aided by Barnaby Adair, Inspector Stokes, Penelope, and Griselda, race to expose a cunning and cold-blooded killer who stalks closer and closer. Will Montague and Violet learn the shocking truth too late to seize their chance at enduring love?
This is the second in a new Regency detective series featuring many of the author's characters from her aristocratic ‘Bastian’ and ‘Cynster’ families and their ‘lesser born’ contemporaries. A rattling good mystery and a meeting of old friends.  What more could you want?  Very enjoyable.  Dot.

Aus. Book Industry Awards

Reading Rewards - reviews -

The 14th Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIAs) were announced in Sydney in front of Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Minister for the Arts George Brandis, with Graeme Simsion’s celebrated novel The Rosie Project taking out the coveted Book of the Year award. Other big winners included the recipient of the 2013 Man Booker Prize, The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton, for International Book of the Year and the multi-award-winning debut Burial Rites by Hannah Kent scooped the Literary Fiction Book of the Year.

The ABIAs are divided into two categories: book awards and business awards. In the business awards, the highly anticipated Lloyd O’Neil Award for Outstanding Service to the Australian Book Industry was award posthumously to legendary novelist Bryce Courtenay, who passed away in 2012. His wife Christine Courtenay accepted the honour on her late husband’s behalf. 

In other categories...

•General Non-fiction Book of the Year: The Stalking of Julia Gillard by Kerry-Anne Walsh
•Illustrated Book of the Year: I Quit Sugar by Sarah Wilson
•Biography of the Year: The Crossroad by Mark Donaldson, VC 
•Book of the Year for Younger Children (age range 0 to 8 years): The 39-storey Treehouse by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton
•Book of the Year for Older Children (age range 8 to 14 years): Weirdo by Anh Do
Deb.

Power Play

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Power Play by Danielle Steel

I am a fan of Danielle Steel, and quite frankly I think her writing has improved with age. She no longer writes the soppy love stories that people have branded her with.

I listened to this book on audio and it did not disappoint. It tells the story of two CEO's of major companies in the USA and the effect of having this powerful position can have on a person.

The male CEO has wound his life into a very complicated secret web where he is actually living a double life until his company delivers an ultimatum, which life will he choose?

Meanwhile the female CEO has put a personal life on hold while she heads up her company, and does not trust herself to find love or someone who will accept her for who she is, not as a powerful head of a company.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and, as always, look forward to Danielle's next offering.
Janine

Before the Poison

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Before the Poison by Peter Robinson

From the cover:  Through the years of success in Hollywood composing music for the world's most lauded films, Chris always promised his wife they would return to the Yorkshire Dales one day. Now, after his wife's death, Chris feels he must not forget his promise. Back in the Dales, he rents an isolated house that will allow him the space to come to terms with his grief and the quiet to allow him to compose his piano sonata. But when he finds that the house was the scene of a murder in the 1950s, and that the convicted murderer was one of the last women hanged in England, he finds himself increasingly distracted by the events of sixty years before...


Apparently this author has written a series spanning some 20 years, the ‘DCI Banks novels’, and this is his first departure in writing a stand-alone novel.  It’s a good effort, the first chapters are atmosphere laden, hooking the reader in immediately.  There’s just something about an old house, a past murder, and the solitude of the English countryside to set the scene!  I like that the main character, Chris, is a composer – far more original than a retired policeman or something of a similar ilk.  He possesses some empathetic traits which makes us feel immediately comfortable – cooking, having a drink, playing music on his iPod, watching DVDs.  But overall, it’s a strange story, one that builds up to its conclusion which, as far as Chris is concerned, was an interesting journey in finding out the past, but that’s the end of that and now on to another day.  Which I guess is pretty much true to life when you search out the answer to a problem and find it. Deb.

A life beyond the trenches by Mavis Martin

Casey-Cardinia 1914-1918: the Great War -

As silence descended over the battlefields of Europe the 11th November 1918, soldiers laid down their weapons to prepare for their homeward journey and civilian life. Henry Thomas Williams of the 38th Battalion was one of the thousands of soldiers whose return to civilian life was marred by the memories of the battle field.  This is a story of how he found solace and a new beginning in the rural tranquillity of Iona.


Henry in uniform
Henry Williams was the cousin of my grandmother, May Rogers, and he enlisted on the 26th January 1917 in the 38th Battalion, aged 33 years.  His unit embarked from Melbourne, on board HMAT Ballarat on the 19th February 1917 and returned to Australia 22nd August 1919. He saw action in France wading through the muddy trenches that ulcerated his legs.


Henry and his bungalow at Little Road, Iona
Henry, like so many soldiers, never spoke of his experiences as he returned to civilian life as a cleaner at Mrs Dauber’s hotel in Lygon Street Carlton. Henry and alcohol became inseparable partners as he tried to erase the memories of war. His decision to seek solace in the country and live with us was beneficial to him as the strongest brew he then drank was coffee. Although he could not reform from every bad habit as the interior of his bungalow was always haze of cigarette smoke.

 Henry like so many soldiers overcame the adversity of war and settled into civilian life. They never forgot the mates that they left behind on the battlefield just as we will always remember their sacrifice.

Henry died aged 78 in 1961 and is buried at the Bunyip Cemetery. Every ANZAC day and Remembrance day we commemorate his memory by placing a token of the soldier’s sacrifice, an Anzac badge or a poppy, on his grave.


Henry working on the farm with Dick Rogers. 

Unknown Woman

Reading Rewards - reviews -

"It is Tuesday May 15 and accidental housewife Lilith Grainger wakes to find herself in a photograph on the front page of the newspaper, in a place she shouldn't be, in a world her privileged family knows nothing about. Lilith's relationship with her selfie obsessed 14-year-old daughter, her overweight son, her good husband who works long hours, her convenience friend Nikki, her mother-in-law Garland who has launched a successful career as a sculptor at 63, are all laid bare.

The Unknown Woman by Jacqueline Lunn is a portrait of a woman who doesn't know who she is anymore and a portrait of modern life."

I usually enjoy books that are categorized "Contemporary Fiction" and especially by a new Australian author. However this book frustrated me, every chapter was about a different character in the book, the neighbour, the mother in law, the daughter, the husband, the son etc. in fact it could have been a short story book.

The main character Lileth, was an actuary before she married and gave up working to look after her husband and children, however she seems to be searching for something, and you never find out quite what that was. She becomes obsessed with her neighbour and definitely steps over the boundary between busybody and concerned neighbour.

I persisted with this book hoping that it would all come together at the end, but sadly, it didn't for me.


~ Janine

Dead Man's Time

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Dead Man’s Time by Peter James

From the cover:  A vicious robbery at a secluded Brighton mansion leaves its elderly occupant dying and millions of pounds worth of valuables stolen.  But as Detective Superintendent Roy Grace rapidly learns, there is one priceless item of sentimental value that the old woman’s powerful family cherish above all else.  And they are fully prepared to take the law into their own hands, and will do anything, absolutely anything, to get it back.
 
I have only just found out that this book is one of the ‘dead’ series featuring DS Roy Grace – Dead Simple, Dead Like You, Dead Tomorrow etc. – and I can picture it being a very gritty UK TV series, it just has that ‘feel’ about it.  Although there are references to a previous wife, and various “old buddies” from other cases, it was fine reading it as a stand-alone book (or in this case, an audiobook very well narrated by Daniel Weyman).  Despite being quite violent, it was a good story, starting in New York in 1922, and moving through a murderous trail linking the antiques world of Brighton UK, the Irish mafia, the crime fraternity of Spain’s Marbella, and the NYPD in 2012.
In a parallel storyline, Grace finds himself up against that most dangerous of all adversaries - a man burning with vengeance who is moving ever closer to destroying Grace’s life by planning to carve up the face of his 7-week old baby son and kill his wife.  He rents the house next door, plots all the comings and goings, sets up listening devices, and even gets into the roof of their home to ‘familiarise’ himself before doing it all for real.  Very creepy indeed.  
All in all, one for the UK crime buffs and anyone else who enjoys a slightly different police procedural.
Deb.

Looking for Alaska

Quicksand -

I don’t think I was really prepared for this book even though I have read all of John Greens books (ironically) I was expecting something I didn’t get, but what I got was so much better. This is probably his
most serious and thoughtful book which is to say a lot, because all of his books are to some extent, serious and thoughtful. It is also a painful book to read but I didn’t quite understand why bad things happen to good people and why good things happen to bad people? Although with John’s ability to interpret different characters into multiple personality’s or egos, he manipulates the story into a very stimulating although very tragic story line creating this ordeal of wanting to endure the story even further.

 The beauty of the Looking for Alaska is that it doesn't hide anything. It showcases what young love and growing up are in a very brutal and honest light. We tend to see how the characters communicate, their relationships with each other, their pasts and the pleasure that comes with being a bad kid shine through the pages... Even though there are 2 parts to the story (before and after which I won’t be spoiling what separates them) it engages the reader to persistently want more. I tend to realise why I like this book so much, it’s because unlike most books aimed at teenagers, they aren’t. They don’t fully experience the depth of what being a teenager means, unlike John Green’s books. John utilizes the average teenager’s day to day life and portrays them in his story’s enabling all ages to feel something of the story (especially teenagers) I would recommend this book to anyone; I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and the author’s collections.


Tiana (Cranbourne work experience student)

Madonnas of Leningrad

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Have you read the first novel by Debra Dean called the Madonnas of Leningrad?  If not can I urge you to grab yourself a copy and get reading?

This is not a long read.  It is not a difficult read.  But it is a beautiful read.

The main character is a Russian woman called Marina.  By peering into her life we are taken on a journey which flits between the present where Marina lives in America as an elderly lady with Alzheimer’s and the past where Marina is a tour guide at the Hermitage Museum in Russia during World War 2.

Marina gives us an insight into the packing up of the entire museum’s collection to protect the art from the bombings as well as the everyday life and suffering of the 2000 citizens who take shelter in the basement of the museum.

You could be forgiven for thinking  from my description that this is a thoroughly depressing book, but never fear. Debra Dean has such a soulful writing manner and her descriptions of the artwork ensure the novel remains a hopeful and altogether lovely story.

Surprisingly enough, Debra had never visited Russia before she wrote the Madonnas of Leningrad. This made her feel as though her readers may perceive her as a bit of a fake so when she received  her advance payment for the novel from her publisher she visited Russia with her husband and began planning her next novel which is called “The Mirrored World.”

It is sitting on the desk next to me as I type so please excuse me if I leave you now! I can’t wait to immerse myself in Debra Dean’s Russian world all over again.

~ Raelene

Song for a Scarlet Runner by Julie Hunt

Book Swamp -

Song for a Scarlet Runner by Julie Hunt is a great fantasy book nominated for a CBCA award this year. It is the story of Peat, a girl on the run after a great sickness has swept over her small town, and she is accused of creating it. Peat leaves behind her sister and the only life she has ever known. She runs into trouble in the form of a little red squirrel like animal that both hinders and helps her on her journey, and a very powerful Marsh Auntie who does the same. It reminds me a lot of the Rowan of Rin series by Emily Rodda – well written, strong plot and a believable and rich fantasy world.

- Celia

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson

Quicksand -

I sobbed all the way through The Impossible Knife of Memory. Laurie Halse Anderson is an amazing American YA author who brought wonderful books like Speak and Wintergirls to teens. Her latest novel is just as moving. Hayley looks after her father who has returned from the Iraq war. He suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, but will not face his own troubles. Hayley is in trouble at school – somehow essays don’t mean as much as they should when you are trying to keep your father alive and functioning. She meets Finn who changes the way she sees the world – but does she have time for anyone else in the strange life she lives? Highly complex, intense and some of the strongest character writing around.

- Celia


Ember Island

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Ember Island by Kimberley Freeman

An Australian story set on a fictitious island in Moreton Bay. In 1876, Tilly, a young English woman, reeling with shock and guilt after her tempestuous marriage ends in horrific circumstances, gets as far from England as she can - she has a new identity and a job on Ember Island, as governess of the Superintendent’s daughter Nell.  She befriends a female convict and a dangerous relationship develops.  Tilly doesn’t know that Nell is watching and writing it all down, hiding tiny journals all over Starwater, her rambling manor home. 
More than 100 years later, bestselling author Nina Jones, struggling with writer’s block and a disappointing personal life, is being pestered by a reporter digging into her past who insists on speaking to Nina about her great-grandmother, Nell. 
Retreating to Starwater, she finds Nell’s journals hidden in the walls and becomes determined to solve the mystery.  Though Tilly and Nina are separated by many years, Starwater House will change both their lives.  Intriguing!
Dot

The hobbit (a very biased review)

Quicksand -

The hobbit is a book written by J.R.R. Tolkien, who also created Lord of the rings and many other books. It is about a hobbit, Bilbo, (Which are a race of children-sized, hairy, happy hungry beings) who goes on a
journey and finds himself doing and saying things altogether unexpected. After Gandalf (My favourite character in both the hobbit and Lord of the rings) shows up at his front door and brings along a band of thirteen dwarves  to accompany Bilbo on an  escapade to slay a dragon and take back their homeland of Erebor.

This is definitely my favourite book because it’s full of adventure and excitement, and it keeps you intrigued. I decided to read this book when I was about eight because of my favourite movie (Lord of the rings) and I wasn’t disappointed. This is the only book that I can recall that I have read more than once, and once you read it it’s easy to understand why. I would recommend this to anyone of any age (Well, anyone of any age who can read, obviously) because it has such a diverse range of interesting things in it. When Tolkien wrote the book, it was intended for readers form ages five to nine, even so, many adults and teens read the book anyway.


Destinee (Cranbourne Work experience student)

Narre Warren Railway Station - the early years

Links to our Past - history -

The Narre Warren Railway station was opened on March 10 1882. When the Gippsland line was established in stages from 1877 to 1879 the only stations between Dandenong and Bunyip were Berwick and Pakenham.

Narre Warren Railway Station, circa 1900 to 1910.State Library of Victoria Image H2012.171/340. Max Thomson collection.Photographer Michael J. Drew
Sidney Webb, of Holly Green, Narre Warren agitated for the establishment of  a railway station near his property and his shops - Holly Green is located  where the Fountain Gate Shopping Centre is now and Webb's shops were on the corner of the Princes Highway and what is now Webb street.


Early days of Berwick page 92
Once the Station was opened Sidney Webb agitated again, this time for a a road to be put through to connect 'the township' with the Station (see excerpt, above, from Early days of Berwick)   In reality the 'township' did, I believe, pretty much consist of shops that Webb had an interest in. According to the Shire of Berwick Rate Books, in 1888 and 1889 a number of businesses were established in Narre Warren -  Albert Raduchel, a blacksmith; Thomas Woodley, a baker; Thomas Stones, a butcher and James Middleton, a storekeeper. They all leased their premises from Sidney Webb. 

Shire of Berwick Minutes from the meeting held April 1, 1882.
As we can see from the Shire of Berwick Minutes, Captain Wauchope, requested that the new road to the station be called Roseneath Road.  The Council did agree at the time. I don't know what happened to Roseneath Road, is it now Webb Street?.

Shire of Berwick Minutes from the meeting held April 29, 1882.
The name Narre Warren originally referred to the township of Narre Warren North. George Rae established a store at Narre Warren North, in the corner of John Troup’s paddock in 1857 and the town was surveyed around  1860. I don't know the exact date when the decision was made to call this new station Narre Warren but it appears that the Shire of Berwick had  role in the naming of the station, as it was mentioned  in the minutes of the April 29, 1882 meeting that the name for the new station had been 'noted'. (see above) Sadly, that's all I can find of this issue, it would be interesting to know if any other names had been suggested.

Shire of Berwick Minutes from the meeting held May 27, 1882.
This entry from the Shire of Berwick Minutes of May 27, 1882 (reproduced above) is the first mention I can find of the Narre Warren Railway station, actually referred to by that name.  It also talks about the formation of the new road and the fact that the Council had accepted a tender of 39 pounds from Rumph Brothers (of Harkaway) for the metalling of the new Roseneath Road. 



This is from the State Government Gazette of  May 11, 1883 where there is a list of works approved by the Governor in Council that the undermentioned services be preformed without tenders being advertised. The works, costing 200 pounds, were  to construct the new road to the Narre Warren Railway Station and Walton's Road. Is this  another road to the Station and not Roseneath road,  which going by the evidence above  was finished a year earlier in 1882?. The State Government Gazette also mentions Walton's Road. I presume that this has a connection to Thomas and Eliza Walton. Thomas & Eliza arrived in Narre Warren  1852 and built Holly Green. They left in 1877 and Sidney Webb purchased Holly Green in 1880. 


The Argus  February 13, 1883, page 10 http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article8495821
An article in The Argus of February 13, 1883 lists a schedule of railway works which have been undertaken and completed or partially completed since July 9, 1881 when Mr Bent took office as Minister for Railways. As you can see it includes the Narre Warren siding and platform.

City of Veils

Reading Rewards - reviews -

The City of Veils by Zoe Ferraris. 

From the cover:  The burkha-clad body of a young woman is discovered on a Jeddah beach; soon afterwards, a strong-minded American woman finds herself alone and afraid in the most repressive city on earth.  Investigating policeman Osama Ibrahim, forensic scientist Katya Hijazi and strictly devour Bedouin guide Nayir Sharqi join forces to search out the truth in the scorching city streets and the vast lethal emptiness of the desert beyond. 

This not my usual cup of tea but as it was recommended by a colleague I gave it a go.  First up, the narrator, Jonathan Keeble, does an excellent job with the myriad accents, both male and female.   This is, in essence, a classic police procedural, but in a totally foreign setting.  It is quite unsettling as a lot of it is presented from the veiled woman’s point of view.  It does drag a bit in the middle, but the sand storm towards the end is gripping!  Overall, it was worth the 14 hours listen but I wouldn’t be in rush to get something in the same vein. 
Deb.

Miles Franklin shortlist

Reading Rewards - reviews -

The Miles Franklin Literary Award is an annual literary prize awarded to "a novel which is of the highest literary merit and presents Australian life in any of its phases". The award was set up according to the will of Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin (1879–1954), who is best known for writing the Australian classic My Brilliant Career (published in 1901) and for bequeathing her estate to fund this award. As of 2013, the award is valued A$60,000.  The 2014 shortlist has just been announced, with the winner awarded on 26 June, 2014. 

Richard Flanagan – The Narrow Road to the Deep North
Fiona McFarlane – The Night Guest
Cory Taylor – My Beautiful Enemy
Tim Winton – Eyrie
Alexis Wright – The Swan Book
Evie Wyld – All the Birds, Singing 

Deb.

One Summer: America 1927

Reading Rewards - reviews -

One Summer: America 1927 by Bill Bryson
 
It was the summer that saw the birth of talking pictures, the invention of television, the peak of Al Capone’s reign of terror, the horrifying bombing of a school in Michigan, the ill-conceived decision that led to the Great Depression, a semi-crazed sculptor with a mad plan to carve four giant heads into an inaccessible mountain called Rushmore, the thrilling improbable return to greatness of Babe Ruth, Charles Lindbergh’s epic flight, and so much more. In this hugely entertaining book, Bill Bryson spins a story of brawling adventure, reckless optimism and delirious energy, with a cast of unforgettable and eccentric characters, with trademark brio, wit and authority.

As usual, Bill has made history more interesting – the book is full of fascinating detail – and while not as humorous as some of his books – he is never afraid to show up the fools, villains, heroes and all the foibles of human nature.  Well worth reading but it does take a while – it is 553 pages long!
Dot

Cora Lynn War Memorial

Casey-Cardinia 1914-1918: the Great War -

The Cora Lynn War Memorial was unveiled on Wednesday, February 22 1922. According to a report in the Pakenham Gazette of March 10, 1922  (reproduced left) the attendance was large, in spite of the showers which fell incessantly.The stone and the machine gun was unveiled by Cr Groves, M.L.A.  I don't know what happened to the machine gun but the memorial is still at Cora Lynn.

 There are nineteen names on the memorial for soldiers
 from the First World War.  I have researched their service number (SN) so if you are interested in finding out more about these soldiers you can look up their full service record on the National Archives of Australia site or their records on the Australian War Memorial site. I have also included their connection to Cora Lynn or the surrounding area.

Here are the soldiers
Clarkin, William. Service Number (SN) 1522. William was born at Bunyip and enlisted at Tynong in December 1914 at the age of 21. He died of wounds in France on August 26, 1916. His next of kin was listed as his brother L. Clarkin of Iona, although an annotation on his Attestation paper says it is his eldest brother, John Clarkin of Garfield.

Doherty, F (Edward Francis). SN  1218.
Doherty, Louis Michael. SN 12392.  They were the sons of John Doherty,  farmer of Tynong, both of the men also had their occupation listed as farmer. Frank was . Killed in Action on August 4, 1916. Louis returned to Australia in May 1919.

Evans, Harry. SN 5589. Enlisted at Warragul in March 1916 at the age of 37. Harry was from  Cora Lynn and his wife Edith Minnie was listed as hi next of kin. He embarked from Melbourne on September 25, 1916 on the HMAT Shropshire A9 and returned to Australia on December 31, 1916 having suffered continually form measles and pneumonia. He was discharged form the Army on February 12, 1917.

Fritz, L – I can find no information about this person.

Holian, John Mildred. SN 16160. He was a farmer from Cora Lynn. His next of kin  was his father, Patrick Holian, also a Cora Lynn farmer.

Huey, John Robert. SN 3168. John was born at Castlemaine and enlisted at Warragul at the age of 30 in November 1916. His occupation was listed as a labourer and he lived at Cora  Lynn at the time of enlistment.

Jeffers, Raymond Alva. SN 6290. Born at Strathbogie and enlisted at the age of 23 in  May 1916. He was a Cora Lynn farmer and the son of Alexander Jeffers, also a Cora Lynn farmer. Lieutenant Jeffers was awarded the Distinguished Conduct medal and the Military medal.


Johnson, Charles Tudor. SN 588.   He was a farmer who lived of Cora Lynn  and was 19 when he enlisted in November 1914. He was the son of Mrs Fanny Johnson of Cora Lynn.

Kinsella, Bertram Michael.  SN 3056.
Kinsella, Norman Francis.  SN 920. They were the sons of Michael Kinsella of Cora Lynn. Bertram was Killed in Action September 25, 1917. Norman returned to Australia after his overseas service in May 1919.

Milligan, Joseph Lewellen. SN 5376. Farm hand of Cora Lynn;  his mother was Catherin Milligan also of Cora Lynn. Joseph was Killed in Action on February 23, 1917.

Murdoch, Arthur Charles. SN 2634. Arthur was born at Iona but was living in Brighton at the time of his enlistment. George Murdoch, his father,  owned the Cora Lynn store from 1907 until 1922.

Pederson, Nils.  SN 1249. Nils was born in Norway and was working as a farm labourer at Cora Lynn at the time of his enlistment. He was Killed in Action on September 1, 1918.

Rigby, William Alexander.  SN 2350. A farmer from Mayfield  Cora Lynn. His father was Isaac Rigby also from Mayfield, Cora Lynn.

Roper, Thornton Graham. SN 61922. A mechanic from Cora Lynn. His father,  James Roper,  was also from  Cora Lynn.

Scanlon, Joseph Bernard.  SN 3452.
Scanlon, Thomas.  SN 505. They are also listed in some official records with the surname Scanlan. They were the sons of William Scanlon of Cora Lynn. Thomas was awarded the Military medal.

Smith, Beith.  SN 1436.  His first name was also listed as Bert and Berth in some documents but I believe that Beith is correct. He was Killed in Action May 9 or May 10 in 1915 at Gallipoli.  I had a hard time finding who B. Smith actually was until I  found out that Beith enlisted at Tynong on September 21, 1914. The Attesting Officer was William Carney, Shire of Berwick President. His occupation was listed as a labourer. He was born at Rochford, near Kyneton and that is where his father lived.

Switchback

Reading Rewards - reviews -

Switchback by Matthew Klein
 
From the cover:  Timothy Van Bender, Yale graduate and hedge fund manager in Palo Alto, lives a magical life. One Tuesday, Timothy wakes to learn that his hedge fund has lost $24 million on a bad bet against the yen. With his company on the brink of collapse, he gets a call from his wife, who phones to say goodbye, moments before jumping off a cliff at Big Sur to her death. Timothy can't believe it - neither can the local police.

Then Timothy’s secretary Tricia shows up on his doorstep, claiming to be his dead wife, and knowing secrets that only Katherine could know. Has he been given a second chance at happiness or is he being played for a fool in an elaborate scam that may cost him his life?


For a debut novel, this one sure packs a punch.  It’s an interesting blend of high-tech Sci-Fi meets High Finance crossed with Romance.  Strange, but it works.  I initially thought I’d get lost in the murky mire of futures trading and hedge funds, but luckily that didn’t happen as the story switched into next gear and moved into technology and the human brain.  This is where you either say “oh please” or hunker down for the ride.  I stuck with it all the way, and at the end of the book was impressed with general lack of holes in this twisting, absorbing story.  It’s very different and I might add, well narrated by Chris Patton.  I might keep an eye peeled for Klein’s second book, “Con Ed”. 
Deb.

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