Trust Me, I'm a Storyteller

January 13, 2017

Travel Purist – immersive travel tailored for you.

Travel Purist is a digital nook for the immersive traveller and culture vulture.

Occasionally, I have written about travel on this blog. In 2017, in addition to my own posts, I intend to include links to some great travel blogs that I’ve discovered;  as well as blogs about writing, editing and publishing.

If you enjoy planning a personal journey, especially to Asia or North America that takes the ‘road less travelled’, take a look at this blog. Sometimes heading off on your own can bring serendipitous moments – and you meet local people.

A tab labelled “Interest” lists travel under topics such as: Art, Culture, Heritage, Hotels and Literature

http://www.travelpurist.com/

So, if you are a travel purist who seeks the heart of your destination. If you consider travel a personal journey ruined by selfie sticks, bucket lists and travel evangelists. If you’re tired of trawling the internet for special interests or travel needs. Travel Purist is a great place to start.

I had the most wonderful time with Janhavi, who showed me out of the way places, villages and communities. I also learned where to have the most delicious, aromatic coffee and enjoyed the best tomato pasta ever! It so helps to be in the know. I also found Janhavi’s Moon “Mumbai & Goa” a wonderful guide when in Mumbai.

Ranwar

Ranwar

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You can write in with your queries to Travel Purist and they’ll help you plan your trip! triptailor@travelpurist.com

Travelpurist reviews hotels, restaurants, bars, travel services, cultural events and relevant products. If you would like a review of your property, service, product or event, please read the policy on the blog first. If you’re in agreement with it, Travelpurist would be happy to do so.

If you would like to advertise, please email feedback@travelpurist.com
I happily declare that I’ve personally met Janhavi and benefitted from her guidance but I have no financial or other interest in Travel Purist. This is purely my personal view and experience.
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September 17, 2015

Writers in the Park, Centennial Park, Sydney. Sunday 27th September 10 am

Great new event for book lovers! Kids and adults alike are welcome to the inaugural and free

Writers in the Park logo

 Writers in the Park

at The Residences Centennial Park

on Sunday 27th September, 2015. 10 am start.

Free entry to the Writers in the Park events

Hosted by The Hughenden​ Boutique Hotel and The Residences Centennial Park

A chance to hear and meet authors and illustrators in one of the most scenic spots in Sydney

Fabulous food, fantastic books and great coffee on sale will make the day perfect, check out the links.

Full day program each for adults and for children with authors, illustrators, cartoonists, journalists, publishers, bookseller and books.

Centennial Parklands

Here’s the Program

& The Writers and Illustrators

including Jessica Rowe, Joanne McCarthy, Annabel Morely, Sunil Badami, Libby Hathorn, P M Newton, Deborah Abela, Anne Schofield, Bem Le Hunte, Lisa Heidke, Hazel Edwards, Susanne Gervay,  Susanna Freymark, Graham Rundle, Michael Parker, Philip Wilcox, Joanne Fedler,  Pamela Cook, Helen O’Dare, Robyn Arrowsmith, Maria Katsonis, Shelley Kenisberg, Reverend Gilmore, Rick Raftos, Shona Martyn and  Jane Curry.

Eastside Radio 89.7FM is setting up live podcast. See also: http://eastsidefm.org/writers-in-the-park-festival/

#‎SimonMarnie‬ from 702 ABC Sydney is interviewing Sunil Badami on Sunday morning on ABC702 radio.- listen in.

Susan Wyndam’s column in Saturday’s Sydney Morning Herald

Writers in the Park poster

Centennial Parklands – Writers in the Park

Writers in the Park website

Writers in the Park Facebook Page

#‎writepark‬

If you’re travelling to Sydney, why not stay at the Hughenden Hotel, 14 Queen Street Woollahra.

The Hughenden melds heritage with modern conveniences to meet individual needs. From cosy rooms to the Manor Suite, family apartments to pet-friendly rooms – with complimentary breakfast, complimentary wi-fi, guest lounge, dining, concierge services and function rooms.
Located at the crossroads of historic Woollahra and Paddington, and surrounded by designer fashion boutiques, restaurants, cafes, The Hughenden is opposite Centennial Parklands and in close proximity to the SCG, Allianz Stadium, the Entertainment Quarter, with easy access to the city and Bondi Beach.
Or if you’re really feeling like a treat have a look at the Residences Centennial Park.

The Residences Centennial Parkland

The Hughenden on Facebook

The Residences Centennial Park on Facebook

April 15, 2015

“Wanderers, All” Latest release by Janhavi Acharekar

janhavi

Janhavi Acharekar Photo credit: Ashima Narain

Janhavi Acharekar has released her latest novel “Wanderers, All, published by Harper Collins India. Wanderers, All will be launched on Friday 17th April, with a panel discussion on the city of Bombay.

Congratulations, Janhavi, this is tremendous news and very exciting for those of us who already enjoy reading your stories.

 

Wanderers, All

Do join Janhavi in conversation with Ramu Ramanathan, Deepak Rao, Bina Sarkar Ellias and Annie Zaidi

at Title Waves bookstore in Bandra

on the 17th of April at 7 pm.

 

Invite _wanderers all

An experimental novel that blurs the boundaries between historical fiction, memoir and travelogue, Wanderers, All is the story of Murlidhar Khedekar whose life plays out against the birth of a new nation in the first half of the twentieth century.

Having migrated to Bombay from a small Konkan village, a young Khedekar attempts to find a place in the vibrant Marathi theatre scene of that era. When he fails to realize his ambitions as an actor, he gradually transitions from a clerk to a wrestler and eventually, a cop in the Bombay City Police.

Providing a sharp – and often amusing – contrast to his life story is the travelogue of his great granddaughter, who sets out on a solo road trip across the Goan coastline, wandering across its beaches, parties and villages.

Seamlessly alternating between two eras, and across Portuguese and British rule in India, ‘Wanderers, All’ throws up questions of divided loyalty, belonging and ownership, of borders between humans and countries. Combining elements of theatre, travel and politics, it is a novel about the journeys we embark on – the purposeful and the aimless.

Wanderers, All” can be purchased through Amazon at: http://goo.gl/PSCFrf

In addition, to assist you, Janhvi’s website has ‘buy now’ buttons for all her books, including the Fear Factor and Only Connect anthologies at http://www.janhavistories.com/index.html

 

November 25, 2014

The adventures and stories of Anu Kumar

If you love history, stories of adventure, murder, mysteries and curiosities then you will love these books by Anu Kumar.

I’ve had the good fortune to publish stories by Anu Kumar in two anthologies of stories from India and Australia. ‘Big Fish‘ in Alien Shores and ‘Two Women’ in Only Connect.

 

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Anu Kumar is presently studying for a masters in creative writing at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.  She also has a degree in history from Delhi University and has specialised in human resources management at the XLRI School of Business. She writes for children as well as for older readers, and her short stories have appeared in various magazines and anthologies.  Her stories have been twice awarded by the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association,  and also short-listed by  The Little Magazine. It Takes a Murder  is her third novel for older readers after Letters for Paul (Mapin 2006) and The Dollmakers’ Island (Gyaana, 2010). She lives in Maryland in the US with her husband and daughter.

Anu’s new book, How Did the Harappans Say Hello? And 16 Other Mysteries of History

published by Red Turtle and available at South Asia Books and Amazon for Kindle

Sneak preview Harappans2

I have a copy of this book  and can tell you that it’s full of fascinating researched history told in the form of engaging stories that children from all over the world will find absorbing. I also have Anu’s The Chola Adventure (Puffin) which takes young readers on many adventures. While these books are difficult to obtain in Australia, some are available as e-books – which are recommended for Australian readers. For those who prefer books in print they are available and I recommend South Asia Books for printed copies. Use the link above for a preview of this book.

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A new book for older readers was released in 2013 Inspector Angre and the Pizza Delivery Boy (Kindle Edition) is a work of crime fiction set in Mumbai, and featuring Inspector Angre. Preview of this book on Kindle and on itunes.

Inspector-Angre-Cover

Check out Anu Kumar’s other books for older readers, including: It Takes a Murder, Letters for Paul, The Doll Maker’s Island, In Search of Raja and Other Stories.

A range of Anu’s books and Reviews

Stories at Anu Kumar’s Blog

And her equally marvellous books for children such as the Atisa Series

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atisa_seven_wonders

 

 

Though postage is expensive to have books sent to Australia, I highly recommend Anu Kumar’s books and South Asia Books for their five star customer service.  Atisa and the Time Machine Adventures with Hieun Tsang , Thanks, Ken.

 MythQuest Series at Amazon – though I haven’t had a chance to read this series yet, it looks terrific. I would love to hear from others who have read Anu’s books.

Images copyright Anu Kumar, please seek permission before using.

August 2, 2014

Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us, Rupa Publications India Edition

Rupa – The House of Best sellers in India

releases

Only Connect: short fiction about Technology and Us

Congratulations to all of our authors!

 Cover courtesy Rupa
Cover design and photography by Pallavi Agarwala

 

ONLY CONNECT!: SHORT FICTION ABOUT TECHNOLOGY AND US

FROM THE INDIAN SUBCONTINENT AND AUSTRALIA

 

by Editors: Meenakshi Bharat & Sharon Rundle

SHARON and Meenakshi in Khazuraho 4(2)

Endorsement on back cover by Tabish Khair.

“We live in a world where battles are fought in cyberspace, relationships are forged through voice-over-IP, and declarations of love are made through speedy text messages. Pertinently then, the stories in Only Connect weigh the deep impact of technology on our lives, relationships, and the ways in which we perceive each other and ourselves.

While Meenakshi Bharat’s ‘B Wid U Soon’ shows how, despite the distance between them, technology helps a couple share the birth of their baby, Janhavi Acharekar’s ‘Sneha, 25’ highlights the hoax of digital ties as a young girl is conned by a cyber-lover. The sinister face of technology is alarmingly demonstrated by Malik Sajad’s graphic tale, ‘Facebooked’, Chandani Lokugé’s ‘Trial by Media’, and Kiran Nagarkar’s ‘The Race for Arms’. Technology changes the language we speak, as dramatized in Neelum Saran Gour’s ‘A Software Sonata’. It colours our perception of lived experience, as shown by Sharon Rundle in ‘Fugue for Guinea Pigs’. And, in fact, technology even irrevocably changes the way we connect with art as Yasmine Gooneratne describes in ‘Barry Meets His Muse’. 

A collection of twenty riveting stories, Only Connect traces this brave new world we have come to inherit.”

Janhavi Acharekar, Manisha Jolie Amin, Sunil Badami, Meenakshi Bharat, Devika Brendon, Susanne Gervay, Roanna Gonsalves, Yasmine Gooneratne, Anita Heiss, Bem Le Hunte, Anu Kumar, Chandani Lokugé, Julia Mackay-Koelen, Sophie Masson, Kiran Nagarkar, Felicity Pulman, Sharon Rundle, Malik Sajad, Sujata Sankranti, Neelum Saran Gourr, Annie Zaidi

Meenakshi Bharat, University of Delhi, is a writer, translator, reviewer and critic. Some of her published books are: The Ultimate Colony: The Child in Postcolonial Fiction; Rushdie the Novelist; and two volumes of Indo-Australian short fiction entitled Fear Factor: Terror Incognito and Alien Shores: Tales of Refugees and Asylum Seekers.

Sharon Rundle is Chair of the University of Technology Sydney Writers’ Alumni; has served on the Board of Directors of the NSW Writers’ Centre; and is a founding member of Asia Pacific Writers and Translators. She coedited Alien Shores and Fear Factor.

http://www.rupapublications.co.in/books/only-connect-short-fiction-about-technology-and-us-indian-subcontinent-and-australia

“Only Connect!” Reviews in:

My City Book Reviews, New Delhi, Saturday Nov 1, 2014

OnlyConnectReviewHT

Indian Link

Sydney Morning Herald

Journal of Postcolonial Writing

UTS Newsroom review of Only Connect,

Sunday Guardian Indian Edition

Telegraph India

Two Circles

Between The Lines Book Review

A mention of “Only Connect!” in The Hindu 

and Business Standard

Sydney Launch of “Only Connect!” was covered by Paul McKenzie at the Indian Telegraph, May 2014, Page 36.

Australian edition of Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us  (April, 2014) by Brass Monkey Books

AuthorsOnlyConnectlaunch_thumb.jpg

 Our previous anthologies are: Alien Shores

Alien Shores launch with slide show.

and Fear Factor Terror Incognito

http://roundtablewriting.com/FFREVIEWS.htm

More at Roundtablewriting.com

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July 2, 2014

Forty-Four, a tale of survival – New book release

 

 

New Book Release

44

Forty-Four, A Tale of Survival,

by Graham Rundle

44BookCoverFiveMile

cover photo courtesy The Five Mile Press and Blue Cork

Published by The Five Mile Press

Cover by Luke Causby, Blue Cork

A Must-Read and it’s in book shops now!

Seven-year-old Graham Rundle was excited to learn he was going for a holiday at a place where he’d have a chance to play with lots of other boys. A few days later, his father dropped him off at Eden Park, a Salvation Army boys’ home outside Adelaide in South Australia.

As soon as his father left, Graham’s few possessions were taken away and he was given old clothes to wear. From now on, he was told, he’d be known around the home simply by his number, ‘44’. When he pleaded to go home, he was told that nobody wanted to take him. He’d been abandoned by his family – even, it seemed, by the grandmother he loved.

This book vividly portrays what happened to Graham over the eight years he spent at Eden Park, living in fear of abuse by his peers and by the men who were supposed to care for him. It captures his extraordinary resilience, determination and humour, and his debt to the loving nana who tracked him down against the odds and offered him hope in the midst of hell.

This extraordinary book contrasts the dark moments of unbelievable depravity with some of the sweetest and most innocent acts of kindness. As well as portraying life in the home, Graham writes of his taste of freedom at high school and at Indigenous camps at the Coorong, and of his time spent with his beloved, lifesaving Nana.

• An extraordinary tale of resilience, determination and humour.
• A ten-year legal battle resulted in a long jail sentence for one of the abusers.

Congratulations, Graham Rundle

Media

The Sun Herald and Sydney Morning Herald 3 Page article (also in print editions)

“Interview: Salvation Army victim Graham Rundle”

Joanne McCarthy. July 20, 2014 – 12:15A

“Reporter Joanne McCarthy won journalism’s highest prize – the Gold Walkley – in 2013 for her series of articles on sex abuse that helped spark the royal commission” SMH.

Also in Newcastle Herald (print and online):

“A victims nightmare in the ‘care’ of the Salvation Army”

http://www.theherald.com.au/story/2423443/a-victims-nightmare-in-the-care-of-the-salvation-army/?cs=12

More Media interviews, articles and reviews

Radio

ABC Blog interview with Richard Stubbs audio link
ABC Newcastle 1233 with Carol Duncan
The Wire

Print

‘Lifestyle’, Daily Telegraph 13 August 2014

“REMEMBER WHEN … Running away from brutality”
Graham Rundle
Copyright 2014 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved

The Land July 20, 2014
Town & Country Magazine August 16
Mccarthy Jan 20, 2014 article
Illawarra Mercury
Cessnock Advertiser
Goulburn press
Goondiwindi Argus July 19, 2014, noon

Herald Sun Review

Margaret Linley’s review (from The Geelong Advertiser) was picked up and run by The Gold Coast Bulletin, Townsville Eye, and Cairns Eye.

What readers are saying:

I just finished 44. I cried and could not understand the cruelty on many levels – from the abandonment by Graham’s father to the relentless cruelty of Ellis and those other boys. I loved the Cook. Nanna was beautiful. However as I finished the book, the strongest impression was the enormous capacity of Graham to survive and to still have values of care for others. Bring back treats and stories for the other desperate little boys, relate to the Jewish survivor, squash food between pages to the boy in the lock-up. However it is survival and that capacity to go on and have a valuable life that is breathtaking. Huge congratulations on an epic journey. Sydney, NSW

It’s a Winner! Sydney NSW

Finished reading in one go. Wrought with pain, yet so true. It takes courage to face truth. And, you have done it. I am sure your heartrending tale will resonate in many sensitive hearts, from far and wide, irrespective of geography, cultures, class or creed. Number 44’s survival will certainly hold out hope to many. Congratulations for the remarkable book you have written. Mumbai, India.

This is truly ‘awe-some.’ Not in the superficial sense. Literally. In the middle of 44. Very disturbing. Very starkly and simply narrated. The horror of the experience and the one sustaining thread of love for Nana very poignantly captured. A great achievement, gritty and courageous. New Delhi, India.

I’m in tears as I write to you. I literally just finished the book. I basically read 99% today. I couldn’t put it down. The little things. Like his love for animals & little gifts & special things he cherished. All the way through I thought, why won’t his Nana keep him? Then it all comes to light. God I can’t stop thinking about so much that I read. The book had impact. It’s so well written. Kulnura, NSW.

My congratulations – it was a compelling read! Hunter Valley, NSW

I wanted to put my arms around that frightened little boy and I was very relieved each time you came to visit your dear Nanna and had a break from that awful place. Millfield, NSW

44 is terrific @Grahamrundle44 has an amazingly detailed memory. He makes a lot of simple mundane things interesting. I read 44 very quickly, Twitter Frances Jones’ Blog

Compulsive reading. Holgate NSW

Big dents of impact on us. Copacabana, NSW

Comments on Susan Gervay’s Blog

Congratulations to Graham for all the hard work and emotions he has invested in, Wamberal, NSW

44bookcover Trudy

cover photo courtesy Trudy Bright Photography (c) with permission

44backcoverTrudy

cover photo courtesy Trudy Bright Photography (c) with permission

Inset photo by Trudy Bright Photography

Look for Forty Four A Tale of Survival on the True Crime or Biography shelves of these shops:

Dymocks – Sydney and suburban shops, Belconnen, Canberra, Nowra and in Melbourne; and online

Abbeys Books, Sydney
Angus & Robertson
Readings
Co-op Online Book Shop

David Jones Stores

Big W

KMart Stores

Better Read
Booktopia
Boomerang Books
Ballarat Books
Riverbend
Fishpond

Bookworld

Book Depository

Atomic Books

Robinsons Bookshop
Kindle Version at Amazon
Apple iBook

iTunes/Apple

Barnes & Noble

Available soon in UK and Europe (August 1).

Sainsburys.co.uk

Senscritique.com

 

Graham Rundle can be contacted through his agent, Brian Cook at The Authors’ Agent

The Five Mile Press

Frances Jones Blog

Trudy Bright Photography

There are still many more survivors fighting for justice, Please also follow Aletha at White Shield Appeal and Aletha’s blog Lewis Blayse.net for latest developments and to support their campaign.

April 22, 2014

Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us

Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us from Australia and the Indian Subcontinent

has just been released and is in book shops now!

oc full cover final2

Thank you to all our authors from Australia and the Indian subcontinent who have contributed to this exciting volume of stories that include crime, mystery, murder, deceit, missed connections, relationships, romance and humour. Truly a wide range of responses to our theme of ‘technology and us’.

 

Published by Brass Monkey Books and available from book shops including Dymocks Melbourne, Readings, Dymocks Erina Fair Central Coast, UTS Co op Bookshop and  Lesley McKay Woollahra (who provided books for the launch), among others.

 Kerry Goldsworthy reviews Only Connect in the Sydney Morning Herald, Spectrum Books, In Short Fiction page.

Salma Shah reviews Only Connect in Indian Link, June 2014.

The launch held at The Hughenden Boutique Hotel in Woollahra on March 31

It was lovely to see so many of our authors at the launch. Thanks to Felicity Pulman, Julia Mackay-Koelen, Bem Le Hunte, Manisha Jolie Amin, Devika Brendon, Susanne Gervay, Roanna Gonsalves and our publisher Kabita Dhara at Brass Monkey Books for joining us in celebrating the release of our book of stories. Many thanks to our authors from the Subcontinent who sent best wishes and promises to be at the launch in spirit if not in body.

My sincere and heartfelt thanks to Co-Editor, Meenakshi Bharat, who is the better half of our editing partnership and who longed to be with us in person but this time it was not to be. Meenakshi now has all the photos and a sound recording from the launch.

 

Authors Only Connect launch

Sunil Badami, author and ABC radio presenter, bon vivant, raconteur, flaneur, did us the great honour of launching the book with a rousing and humorous speech that had us all spellbound. Sunil generously read from the stories of our contributing authors as he spoke about the significance of Only Connect. Sunil’s story ‘Leftovers’ is one of the highlights of the volume. While it may be unusual for one of the contributing authors to launch the book, we really could think of no-one better than Sunil.

 

Sharon Sunil Kabita

Sharon with Sunil Badami and Kabita Dhara

After enjoying Sunil’s speech and toasting to the success of Only Connect: short fiction about Technology and Us, we continued to party and celebrate its release. I know I had a marvellous time chatting to the authors, publisher and guests.

View Launch of Only Connect Short fiction about Technology and Us at the Hughenden Hotel
View Full Album

My heartfelt thanks to all at the Hughenden Hotel for sponsoring the launch and thanks especially to Jamie and to Ryan Power who gave so generously of their time to set it all up; and to Deidre Stein who designed the poster, invitations and champagne vouchers for our launch. All the Hughenden staff went out of their way to take care of guests who attended the launch and those who stayed at the hotel for the weekend. We all noticed and appreciated it. And last but not least thanks to Vincent’s Bar and Restaurant for providing the champagne and for welcoming our guests who booked for lunch.

 

SBS Hindi Kumud Merani interviews Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle about Only Connect: Short Fiction about Technology and Us.

For more information, please see the Brass Monkey Books Press Release:

Only Connect Press_Release with booksellers

March 15, 2014

God’s Donkey Brisbane Launch

God’s Donkey

by Peter Gale

Gods Donkey Gale Cover

The true story of Sister Mary Theodore OAM and Mithra

 was launched in Brisbane by Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne, Peter Gale and Sister Theodore's niece, Helen Mahoney at the Brisbane launch.

Jennifer Byrne, Peter Gale and Sister Theodore’s niece, Helen Mahoney at the Brisbane launch.

The speech from Qld Parliament following the launch (reproduced here with authorisation from Peter Gale).

 

Sister Mary Theodore

Ms TRAD (South Brisbane-ALP) (9.07 pm): I rise to speak this evening in order to acknowledge a woman of great strengths, Sister Mary Theodore. Born on Brisbane’s south side, Sister Theodore was one of eight children in a Lebanese family. At just 17 years of age she had already chosen what path she would take in life and by the time she was 24, Sister Theodore completed her training with the church and was immediately posted to India. For over 60 years this was her home and it was where she founded Mithra, an organisation in the city of Chennai that is dedicated to educating and rehabilitating children with a disability, particularly those from the poorest sections of the community.

 

With all that she did, Sister Theodore had a funny way of describing her work. She would commonly refer to herself as ‘God’s donkey’. She would say, ‘That animal is me. That donkey knows how to serve. It was a donkey that carried Christ into Jerusalem. It is a simple creature but it knows when to resist and when to dig in its toes and be stubborn and fight.’

 

Dr Peter Gale at the University of South Australia has published a biographical account of Sister Theodore’s life and has appropriately titled it God’s Donkey. On 9 February I attended the book launch, which was presided over by Jennifer Byrne. By learning about why she chose that life-by understanding all that she did under such challenging circumstances-I am of the view that Sister Theodore’s story proved this simple point: just because you come from somewhere small like Brisbane does not mean you cannot achieve big things.

 

Sister Theodore strengthened Australia’s ties with some of India’s most vulnerable by creating an exchange program that brought Australian students to Mithra so they could help provide a helping hand. She strengthened these ties that bind us by proving to those children that we see them, that we care for them and that we have not forgotten about them when so many others have, and they loved her for that.

 

She was not Sister Theodore to them, she was ‘Mother’. It is people like her who give us heart. On 7 December 2012 she passed away after 86 years. ‘The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.’ Sister Theodore may no longer be with us, but we remember her in this book, in this world and in this place. She will forever be engrained in our past, and whether it is through the people that she helped and loved in Chennai, and particularly in Mithra, or those she inspired in South Brisbane, the work and vision of Sister Theodore will carry on into the future, and that is for certain.

 God’s Donkey was also launched on 15th January 2014 at 11.00am in the Divine Mercy Auditorium, Don Alberione Center, Mithra Campus.

God’s Donkey is published by Wakefield Press and available at http://www.wakefieldpress.com.au/product.php?productid=1150&cat=0&page=&featured=Y

I was fortunate enough to be at the Indian Association for the Study of Australia Conference in Kerala, India, where Peter Gale spoke about Sister Theodore and Mithra.

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I hear the book is selling well, so be sure to order your copy from Wakefield Press; or ask for it in your local bookshop.

March 8, 2014

New Book Releases

The first is a picture book for children by my friend and colleague Meenakshi Bharat

The Little Elephant Throws a Party

Published by National Book Trust: New Delhi, 2014.

was released in February at the World Book Fair.

The Little Elephant Throws a Party is a based on a fable which is given a new twist and a surprise ending when a very happy little elephant receives the best birthday present he could wish for. The illustrations by Debabrata Ghosh are a delight, created with a whimsical touch, they cannot help but bring smiles and chuckles as they depict the antics and facial expressions of the animals. A gorgeous book and a must-read for bedtime stories.

Little Elephant Cover          Little Elephant Back Cover

See below for where to buy your copy of this very special beautifully illustrated picture book. Postage is free in India. For Australians, postage fee depends on the number of books ordered, so please inquire when placing your order:

Mayank Surolia, Assistant Director (NRO), National Book Trust,India

5 Institutional Area, Vasant kunj, New Delhi 110070. Tel: 011-26707873. Email: nro.nbt@nic.in

Another Must-Read!

God’s Donkey

by Peter Gale

 

The true story of Sister Mary Theodore OAM and Mithra.

Gods Donkey Gale Cover

Sister Mary Theodore established Mithra in 1977, in Chennai, India. Sister Theodore ‘commonly referred to herself as God’s donkey, doing God’s work in India’.

Mithra provides care and rehabilitation for disabled children “without distinction for religion, caste, creed, community, sex and financial or social status”.

Many of you would have seen Sister Mary Theodore (from Brisbane, Queensland) on Australian television speaking about her work with the children. She was interviewed by Jennifer Byrne who travelled to Mithra to do a 60 Minutes Report.

Peter Gale met Sister Mary Theodore in 2005. He made many more visits to Mithra witnessing how children were given back their lives and sense of dignity.

John McCarthy, Australian High Commissioner to India from 2004-2009, says that ‘Australians are in one sense the heirs of Sister Mary Theodore. The others are the children of Mithra’.

You will be moved and in awe of Sister Mary Theodore’s determination and dedication to these children.

Many people say that doing anything in India is a challenge. To take on the challenge of starting a home and rehabilitation centre for disabled children without land and funds was something that most people would say was not possible. For Sister Mary Theodore, an Australian citizen living in India it was an even greater challenge. Sister Theodore did not speak Tamil and had no experience of buying land, starting a business, working with Government, constructing buildings, or raising the funds to build them. However, while most concluded that it was an impossible dream, Sister Mary Theodore’s response was, ‘you just do it!’

Sister Theodore received an OAM in 1991 for her work with disabled children and the Asialink Weary Dunlop Medal in 2006 for services to Asia by an Australian.

Stories and images told ‘through many different eyes and ears’ form the narrative of this unique, uplifting and absorbing tale.

Published by Wakefield Press and available at http://www.wakefieldpress.com.au/product.php?productid=1150&cat=0&page=&featured=Y

December 22, 2013

Compliments of the Season

Wishing everyone a Merry Yuletide and a safe and happy holiday.

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It’s been a busy year with several highlights, including but not limited to:

  • Graham’s book in production for release in 2014;

  • Only Connect: tales of Technology and Us from Australia and the Indian subcontinent’ ,  which I co-edited with Meenakshi Bharat, due for release in 2014 – it has intrigue, suspense, romance and humour – stories from some of the best emerging and established authors on both continents;

  • Gondwanalandings at the Victorian State Library;

  • The UTS Postgraduate Conference; mindfulness-research-program-2013

  • Book launches and events – fabulous books were launched this year, some have appeared on this blog – including: Dancing to the Flute (Manisha Jolie Amin), After Love (Subhash Jaireth), Poetic Connections: Australia and India (ed Tamaso Lonsdale),  Letter to George Clooney (Debra Adelaide), A Country Too Far (Ed. Rosie Scott & Tom Keneally) and Susanne Gervay’s Gracie and Josh and  ‘I Am Jack’ translations; Meenakshi Bharat A House for Mr Biswas: Critical Perspectives;

  • Theatre events, including opening nights at ‘Rapture Blister Burn’ at The Ensemble and ‘The First Garden: Olive Pink’ at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens; ‘Short & Sweet’ at Newtown and Nautanki Theatre.

  • The UTS Writers’ Alumni continuing to expand and our fabulous team at Writers Connect;

  • Interviewing authors, publishers and reviewers for my research. Many thanks to all who participated and contributed their views and valuable insights;

  • Catching up with friends when in Sydney—including Susanne Gervay, Wendy Ashton, Libby Sommer, Devaki Monani, Devika Brendon, Sunil Badami, Louise Porebski, Shashi Sharma, Manisha Amin, Roanna Gonsalves, (when she is in Sydney), Chris and Natasha Raja, Ali Atkinson-Philips (when they are in Sydney) and all at the South Asian-Australian Writers’ Network (SAAWN).

I’m now eagerly anticipating a Merry Yuletide with my family who I don’t see nearly often enough. After that I’m looking forward to the New Year with more book releases; conferences, cultural programmes and keynote series  (including Kerala & Delhi); and continuing my research at UTS.

Watch this blog for the call out for stories for the fourth Indo-Australian anthology sometime in 2014.

Cheers,

Sharon

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