‘Out Of Chaos’ is a compelling autobiographical read, written with honesty in a matter-of-fact style that makes reading this somewhat discomfiting story still a quite comfortable experience.
The title of this book is no lie: it is a story of family dysfunction, homelessness, crime and abuse experienced by a young woman who had the strength to then reclaim and rebuild her life. It is a cautionary tale about how easy it can be to fall so far that it’s hard to get back up, but it is also a story that would give hope to anyone in similar situations.
Mott neither glorifies the less-than-stellar choices and actions of her misguided youth nor begs for the reader’s pity as she tells her story, but does evoke a great deal of understanding and empathy in the reader as her life is pulled into a downward vortex from which she cannot escape. The moments of resolve and the decisive actions that Elle takes as a result position the reader to share her hope of a better life and to almost will her to make it work, despite the fact that they are reading the story in past tense.
Despite the bleakness of its beginning and the despair encountered as the story continues, the overall tone and the message of this book are positive and life-affirming.
‘Out Of Chaos’ has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Find your copy here.
‘Josie’ is the true story of a young German girl who endured the family’s expulsion from their home in Glogon, now Glogonj in Serbia, after Workd War II, and the horrors of persecution and imprisonment.
Written from a child’s perspective, the story is told in a straightforward but very personal way, so that the reader develops a strong sense of empathy and connection with Josie, taking on her emotions and feeling the tension of key moments in the story quite profoundly.
While Josie’s experiences are neither sanitised nor glossed over, her story is encouraging and positive, a powerful testimony to the importance of love, hope, and family connections in a world that so often seemed to Josie to be full of hatred and violence.
A suitable read for teens and adults, ‘Josie’ has been awarded a Silver Acorn.
Find your copy here.
It takes a particular kind of person to embrace the challenges of living in the more isolated parts of coastal Alaska, and to not only survive but thrive on the landscape and lifestyle that it presents.
George Davis has certainly proven himself to be up to the challenge throughout the years. His experiences are varied and interesting, and his story is told in a conversational way that is enjoyable and easy to read.
‘Alaska Man’ has been awarded a Bronze Acorn.
Find your copy here.
If you’re ever frustrated by things people do at the movies, this book is for you.
‘Dear Moviegoer’ is a collection of short pieces addressed to folks to go to the cinemas, from the point of view of a theatre employee. Some of the entries are lighthearted, some are informative and provide some great practical tips for improving one’s moviegoing experience. Others are slightly snarky – and with good reason! Personally, I would have liked to see more snark, but that might just be me. I love snark.
It’s fair to say that until I read this book, I had no idea of the extent of the bad behaviour that movie theatre employees have to put up with. On a “decent human being” level, I’m appalled at what some people think is acceptable. That the author managed to communicate her responses and explain the finer points of cinema etiquette in a polite and straightforward manner, often with a touch of good humour, is a mark of her good character.
An enjoyable read, ‘Dear Moviegoer’ has been awardeda Silver Acorn.
Get your copy here.
A fascinating true story of the discovery of a Tudor document in 21st century Australia.
This is a fascinating true story of a vellum manuscript from Tudor times, its discovery in a bookshop in Warrnambool in 2013, and the journey of discovery undertaken by Lorraine Smith to learn of the manuscript’s history.
It’s really well-written with an easy-going, conversational tone that makes the reader feel as though they’re just listening to the author tell her story, so it’s very relaxing and enjoyable to read. The reader gets a good feel for the character of the author as well as the different personalities she has encountered in the course of her investigations.
The story is complemented by very clear and interesting photographs and maps.
Because it is such an interesting read, ‘Journey of a Lost Manuscript’ has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Find your copy on Amazon or contact Spectrum Books in Warrnambool, Australia.