Christian College Geelong Senior Library: Lovers of literature

The Happiest Refugee by Anh Do


The laugh-out-loud, reach-for-your-hanky story of one of Australia’s best-loved comedians.

The Happiest Refugee is Anh Do’s debut in the book world and a bruisingly honest depiction of his life to date. The story starts with Do’s parents meeting and falling in love in war-torn Vietnam, and tracks a young Anh as he and his family journey from their homeland to a refugee camp in Malaysia and finally Australia. Do takes us through the pleasures and pitfalls of growing up in Australia as an outsider. One of the things that particularly stands out about his attitude to life is just how unconditionally grateful he is to have experienced everything—even the bad. This book is about war, escape, pirates, love, courage, racism, alcoholism, comedy, tragedy, and, above all, hope. The way Do approaches his story is witty, charming and heart-warming, and just when you think you’re about to die from laughter, he wrenches your heartstrings so hard that within an instant you’re on the brink of crying The Happiest Refugee tells the incredible, uplifting and inspiring life story of one of our favourite personalities. Tragedy, humour, heartache and unswerving determination – a big life with big dreams. Anh’s story will move and amuse all who read it.

Written by: Bookseller+Publisher magazine

April 29, 2011 Posted by | Biographies, Humor | | Leave a comment

The eternal ones by Kirsten Miller

What if love refused to die?

Haven Moore can’t control her visions of a past with a boy called Ethan and a life in New York that ended in fiery tragedy. In our present, she designs beautiful dresses for her classmates with her best friend Beau. Dressmaking keeps her sane, since she lives with her widowed and heartbroken mother in her tyrannical grandmother’s house in Snope City, a tiny town in Tennessee. Then an impossible group of coincidences conspire to force her to flee to New York, to discover who she is, and who she was. In New York, Haven meets Iain Morrow and is swept into an epic love affair that feels both deeply fated and terribly dangerous. Iain is suspected of murdering a rock star and Haven wonders, could he have murdered her in a past life? She visits the Ouroboros Society and discovers a murky world of reincarnation that stretches across millennia. Haven must discover the secrets hidden in her past lives, and loves, before all is lost and the cycle begins again.

The Eternal Ones is an engrossing and utterly enchanting story of true love, discovery and destiny that defies time. Thrilling and magical. A must read.” Amazon Books

April 29, 2011 Posted by | Paranormal, Romance | | Leave a comment

The Danger Zone series by David Gilman

This fantastic series has been described as “an exciting fast-paced story that never let’s up” The Independent

Blood Sun

 Desperate to uncover the secret of his mother’s death, Max Gordon is chased into the night by a ruthless mercenary. His search takes him from the desolate hills of Dartmoor to the endangered rainforest of Central America – where the devastation hides a sinister secret. Drug smugglers, deadly crocodiles, man-eating snakes and flesh-stripping piranhas await Max at every turn. Has Max’s quest for the truth led to an answer for which he’ll pay the ultimate price?

Ice Claw

Max Gordon. Wanted for murder. Two thousand freezing metres high in the mountain peaks, Max Gordon is grappling with death. His race to win an X-treme sports challenge has become a race to survive. Max witnesses the last moments of a mysterious Basque monk, who screams a cryptic clue before plummeting to his death. The clue is a prophecy that fortells of a cataclysmic ecological event which will kill millions across Europe. Now Max is trapped in the darkness of a dead man’s secret and the hunt is on. How will Max prove his innocence when nobody will trust him – and he can trust no one.

Visit the author’s website:http://www.davidgilman.com/

April 7, 2011 Posted by | Adventure, Boys' read, Great series | | Leave a comment

Once was lost by Sara Zarr

In her third novel, acclaimed author Sara Zarr examines the coexistence of affliction and hope, and what happens when everything you thought you believed—about God, about your family, about yourself—is transformed.

As a pastor’s kid, Samara Taylor is supposed to have a good relationship with God and an unshakable faith. But a lot of things in her life have made Sam a doubter. With her alcoholic mom in rehab after a DUI and her father more concerned with his congregation and appearances, Sam can’t help but feel as if God doesn’t exist. And that feeling is only compounded when a local girl is kidnapped, turning her whole community upside down.

Once Was Lost is a blunt novel of faith and what happens when everything you believed in is changed irrevocably. Sam is a very convincing and relatable character that readers will be able to connect with on any level, especially as her doubt about her beliefs is something that nearly ever person has confronted at least once in their lifetime. She brings up issues that some people may not think about, like not being included with friends because of her beliefs and who her father is. Zarr also does an excellent job at portraying the tense setting as the whole town deals with the kidnapping and fear begins to control others and accusations are slung left and right.

The best thing about Once Was Lost though is that it doesn’t concentrate on the all of the things that go wrong, like the kidnapping, Sam’s mother’s DUI, or inappropriate relationships, but rather examines its affect on Sam and her faith. Once Was Lost isn’t a hugely dramatic novel full of twists and turns, but it is a gripping, sometimes heartbreaking look at how ordinary people learn to deal with a less than perfect world. Zarr’s latest book is an excellent, non-preachy look at faith and religion that any reader, believer or not, can enjoy.

Reviewed by The Compulsive Reader

April 4, 2011 Posted by | Family/Relationships | | Leave a comment

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse

“Dead girl walking,” the boys say in the halls.
“Tell us your secret,” the girls whisper, one toilet to another.
I am that girl.
I am the space between my thighs, daylight shining through.
I am the bones they want, wired on a porcelain frame.



Lia and Cassie were best friends. But something went wrong and Cassie changed. Now Cassie is dead and Lia has thirty-three unanswered calls on her phone, thirty-three messages from her ex-best friend, all sent the day she died.

How did she die? Why did she cut herself off?

While Lia searches for answers, she drives herself relentlessly down her own path to destruction—to be thin, strong, in control. And completely empty.

Wintergirls is a powerful but intimate story of one girl’s chilling descent into the all-consuming vortex of anorexia.

April 4, 2011 Posted by | Chick Lit | , , | Leave a comment

Resurrection by Mandy Hagar

 This is third and final gripping  book in the Blood of the Lamb series by New Zealand author Mandy Hager. The other books in the series are The Crossing and the second  in the series Into the Wilderness.

Maryam might fight for her life, freedom and love in this stunning finale to the Blood of the Lamb series. Maryam and Lazarus arrive back at Onewere and Maryam, in trying to loosen the Apostles’ religious stranglehold by showing the people the miraculous remedy, is captured. The ruling elite decide to manipulate her return and Lazarus’s so-called ‘resurrection from the dead’ by setting in motion a highly orchestrated pretence of embracing her as the new Messiah – right down to planning her eventual sacrifice and death by crucifixion before a hysterical and brain-washed crowd. In a sequence that mirrors Christ’s final hours, Maryam must somehow get the islanders to listen to her plea to start thinking for themselves – eventually managing to stir the independence in their hearts just as she is about to be put to death.

April 4, 2011 Posted by | Great series, War | | Leave a comment