by Patricia S. Gibbons
GENRE: FICTION / Biographical
Penelope, aged 9, and her family emigrate from the UK to Australia. This book covers her journey onboard the ship and her family's friendship with a Greek family. This friendship continues in Australia throughout their life's journey.
The book includes the life effects of being interfered with as a child, and the ups and downs of adopting children. Along the way there is mystery, murder, love and disappointment.
Patricia Gibbons keeps you intrigued and in wonder of what is to come.
An exciting read!
September 19th, 1951, was my ninth birthday. The P&O Liner Ranchi pulled away from Tilbury Docks in the United Kingdom, bound for an unknown future in Australia, its engines roaring through the water, drowning out the singing from our friends and family gathered at the dock to bid us farewell. I could hear them singing and attempting to harmonise their favourite Vera Lynn war tune, ‘We’ll meet again’ as well as ‘Good night, Irene.’ The sights and sounds will stay in my memory forever.
My name is Penelope (the family calls me Penny), and the immigration of the family to Australia was a sad day for me, but a day of excitement and wonder for my mother Ada and my two sisters, Shirley, who was sixteen, Kate, fourteen, and my elder brother John, who was eighteen.
Dad had made the journey to Australia two years before, and mum longed to see him again on our arrival in Melbourne, Victoria. It was not long before this when Dad returned to the United Kingdom from the war. The family had been evacuated from our house in London when the Germans bombed it. We had so many unpleasant memories of the bombings in London, the air raid shelters, the Germans bombing our school, and finally having to evacuate to the country. After the war, when Dad arrived home, he decided there was a better life for us all in Australia.
Being in the Royal Air Force, it was not a difficult thing for Dad to ask for a transfer to The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) and make the trip to Australia to set up house for us all in this new land. Dad had met several Australians while fighting in the war, and he grew to like their sense of fun and their outlook on life. They painted a picture of Australia in Dad’s mind as a land of opportunity, a great place to start a new life. As a number of his mates were stationed at the Point Cook Air Force base in Melbourne, he applied to be posted there, and it was granted. So on September 19th, 1951, we were on our way.
The trip to Australia took six weeks. We travelled through the Suez Canal, and it was an adventure for all the family. The giant liner was a huge playground for us. There were immigrants from the United Kingdom, Greece, Italy, and other countries on board, and one of the Greek families – The Papadopoulos family – became good friends with us all. They had three sons and a daughter. The boys were Sebastian, ten, who became my first boyfriend; Alex, who was just the right age at eighteen to be a friend for John; Theo, a good looking dark haired typical Greek boy of seventeen years, who was to become Shirley’s onboard romance, and last but not least, was a fifteen-year-old girl called Mia who was the right age as a friend for Kate who was very outspoken, Mia was quite shy and Kate bossed her around. It seemed to work out fine between them, and they became inseparable.
A Word With the Author
1.Did you always want to be an author?
No, I wrote my first book “The Rottweiler in Australia” - the first 20 years. As a Rottweiler breeder, exhibitor and judge, I realised there were no books written about the Rottweiler in Australia and set about rectifying that.
I did enjoy writing that book, but have always felt I would like to write a novel. So Covid came with lockdown, and gave me time to sit and write.
2.Tell us about the publication of your first book.
As I said the publication of my first book “The Rottweiler in Australia” was primarily to give back some of my knowledge to the Rottweiler owners of Australia. When I visited the USA to judge, I was honoured when the Club set up a book signing tent for me at the show. There was quite a lineup of Rottweiler enthusiasts and lots of conversation about the Rottweiler in Australia on that day.
3.Besides yourself, who is your favorite author in the genre you write in?
I have a library full of Patricia Cornwells books, I do enjoy her writing and characters that follow through from book to book.
4.What's the best part of being an author? The worst?
I think the best part of being an author is the sense of achievement. The knowledge that you have actually set about and finished a goal in your life. I guess the worst part is yet to show its ugly head.
5.What are you working on now?
I am half way through my second life’s journey. As my life progresses through my interests being Homoeopathy, Rottweilers, dogs in general, and now into racehorses, there are still lots of stories of interest to tell.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Patricia writes under the fictitious name of Patricia Gibbons. She has lived a busy life and some of her adventures are in her new novel, Life’s Journey, but not all:
In her teenage years singing and dancing were also one of Patricia’s loves and she appeared in a number of stage performances.
Patricia successfully bred Rottweilers for 42 years, and wrote her first book The Rottweiler In Australia about the first 20 years. She published this book back in the mid-1980’s. After becoming an All Breeds Dog Judge, Patricia judged Championship Dog Shows all over Australia, and she travelled overseas to judge in the UK, USA, New Zealand, Malaya, the Philippines and China.
Patricia has a Diploma in Classical Homeopathy and Bach Flower Remedies.
Connect with Patricia Gibbons
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