Hello Lovelies! Please excuse our dust while we do a bit of construction on the blog. We will still be posting exciting reviews, brilliant guest posts, and exciting giveaways but we are in the process of transforming the blog and adding new content and features for you to enjoy.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Review: Reg Pascoe - The Vet They Called God

Title: Reg Pascoe - The Vet They Called God
Author: AZ Pascoe

Publisher: 16th August 2022 by PascoeInk

Pages: 290 pages

Genre: nonfiction, biography


'Don't look now... but God's in the front row.'

This was a frequent refrain at both Australian and international veterinary conferences for decades. And there Dr Reg Pascoe would be: watching and listening attentively, eyes glinting with wry humour behind his glasses. His brilliant mind and unyielding curiosity made him an international legend. His dedication to education and investigation made him a veterinary pioneer. And his passion and breadth of expertise earnt him a nickname no one gainsaid.

This is the story of how a young man from a poor rural Queensland family became the vet they called God.

On a rocky patch of ground in a small country town called Oakey, Dr Reg Pascoe built an internationally renowned veterinary clinic. From that quiet corner of the country, he served as a cornerstone of the Australian horse industry for over fifty years. His self-driven research illuminated shadowy corners of equine veterinary medicine and his commitment to developing professional veterinary organisations and mentoring junior vets enriched the Australian veterinary profession. But Reg Pascoe was far more than simply a vet.

This biography, rich with tales from those whose lives Reg touched, chronicles the life of a great Australian. Despite the challenges that met him during his journey, Reg never allowed himself to be constrained by his fears or the limitations others might have placed upon him. His life is an example of who we might be if we, too, pursue our dreams with fervour and with a genuine desire to serve those around us.

And how in doing so, we might quietly, generously, and humbly change the world.

My Thoughts

“People literally referred to him as God … they weren’t being cynical; I think it was a genuine reflection of their respect for him. Because he really was the leading light in equine work in a public sense.”

Having just farewelled the Queen, it was somewhat fitting to review a book about an iconic figure, a man they referred to as, ‘God’. For over fifty years Reg Pascoe proved to be an integral influence on the Australian horse industry in the advancement of equine medicine. Discoveries he made led to advancements that are felt up to this day. Here was a man who devoted his life to veterinary science, community and family. 

Veterinary science in Australia was in its infancy at the time a young Reg took it up. He would see a growth that would witness the transformation from the unrecognised to the structure, regulation and professionalism we take for granted today. Reg gained international recognition for his skills and knowledge in animal medicine and teaching that would influence thousands of vets throughout Australia and indeed the world. 

Yet Reg’s story is more than that of a humble vet. Here is a story of a young man who inadvertently opened a letter not meant for him that turned the course of his life and many others from dream to reality. His granddaughter, AZ Pascoe, is a Queensland-born Australian writer who has done an incredible amount of investigation and research into this well informed book. She hoped to capture the essence of an incredible life and I believe she has done that and so much more. 

‘The death of someone we love is inevitably coloured by the fear that they will be forgotten – this book, a tribute to my grandad, is my effort to ensure Reg Pascoe never can be.’

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

Monday, September 19, 2022

Review: The Night Tide

Title: The Night Tide
Author: Di Morrissey

Publisher: 13th September 2022 by Pan Macmillan Australia

Pages: 416 pages

Genre: contemporary, mystery

My Rating: 3.5 crowns


After an election upheaval, Dominic Cochrane decides it's time to leave his twenty-year political staffer career behind. He opts to stay at a friend's converted waterside boatshed in a quiet bay in a Sydney backwater.

The long-time neighbours take Dom into their fold, but his peaceful retreat is quickly upended as he becomes embroiled in a tragic mystery.

As money sharks circle treasured family homes in the secluded community, tensions mount as their way of life is threatened, secrets are exposed and old wounds reopened. Can Dom unravel what really happened so many years ago, or have the secrets been swept away on the dark night tide?

My Thoughts

Di Morrissey is one of Australia’s most successful and prolific authors. Her latest, The Night Tide, involves a mystery with a family tragedy. Once more there is much on offer here to entice the reader with a variety of themes and stories - personal development, lifestyle, family secrets, small community living and of course, Di’s considered focus on the environment.

‘Life is full, complicated, busy . . . but when you look back, it was happy.’ She looked at him. ‘You don’t always realise it at the time.’ She glanced away, her lip trembling slightly as she added in a low, tight voice, ‘And now I feel so angry with him. How dare he . . . just leave us . . .’

This time Di gives readers an interesting male lead which makes for a nice change as he takes time out of the rat race to reflect and review on his life. As always there are a range of secondary characters and life in a small rural community. I appreciated not only the descriptions of the wonderful location but also the acknowledgement of land versus development debate. I did, however, find the mystery to be the weakest link. I kept waiting for some big reveal but much like the story, it was a gentle reveal - dare I say, a little disappointing? That being said, I would rather the book have had a central focus on the environment and corporate takeovers of the natural bush for development; or, on Dominic (lead character) and the search for a new start in life. The mystery reveal was insipid and fell flat for me.

‘So little was known. What was the point of dragging all this up again after a quarter of a century?’

A Di Morrissey book is always guaranteed engaging reading. A thoughtful story to lose yourself in for a few hours.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. The quoted material may have changed in the final release.