The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth – a review

The Good Sister cover

The Good Sister: Everyone has a Dark Side kept me turning the pages until way past my bedtime. The sixth book by best-selling Australian author Sally Hepworth, it boasts plenty of plot twists and big themes. Mystery and psychological intrigue abound as we learn about the family dramas that surround the sisters and their mother.

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Hard lockdown mark II against COVID-19

Hard lockdown mark II

Hard lockdown mark II in Western Australia pounced quickly. After ten months of no community transmission of COVID-19 and our ordinary lives, the edict came yesterday as a shock. Not that we should have been surprised. Mark McGowan, the State Premier, warned all along that, should there be a case of community spread of COVID-19, he would act swiftly.

Within minutes of the announcement, the sceptics and naysayers showed up in force on social media. But those in favour of the restrictions greatly outnumbered them. Most seem to be glad that the government took strong, decisive and immediate action.

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Alert: post contains tragic news

serenity prayer

It is with deep sadness and a heavy heart

that I announce the death

of my beautiful and beloved younger daughter,

Anne Mari O’Callaghan (Annie).

Born on 11 August, 1965, she died on 27 December 2021.

She is survived also by her daughters,

Renee Paige and Megan Jane Muhleisen, her grandson Bailey Muhleisen

and her siblings, Jenny, Michael, Peter, James and Timothy O’Callaghan.

Rest in peace, dearest Anne.

Fake it till you make it psychology and sociology

Fake it till you make it

Fake it till you make it sounds like an instruction to trick or deceive. But it actually provides useful direction for people who find themselves in a new or difficult position and unsure about how to proceed. The phrase suggests that by imitating confidence, competence, and an optimistic mindset, a person can realize those qualities in their real life.

I first came across the concept way, way back in my early years of tertiary study. Hearing about it at the start of a Social Science Degree at the WA Institute of Technology,* I laughed at the idea.

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Book review challenge that preferences women writers

Book review challenge

A book review challenge that preferences women writers guarantees my interest. And, as it turned out, my participation also over a number of years. This is the tenth year of the Australian Women Writers Challenge.

Here’s a quote f rom their website. It explains this book review challenge better than I can.

The AWW challenge was set up to help overcome gender bias in the reviewing of books by Australian women. The challenge encourages avid readers and book bloggers, male and female, living in or outside Australia, to read and review books by Australian women throughout the year. You don’t have to be a writer to sign up. You can choose to read and review, or read only.

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Tin Horse Highway for serious fun

Tin horses highway dancing horses

The Tin Horse Highway featured high on my list of things to do during our recent venture into the Great Southern Region of Western Australia. We left it until the last day, and went on our way home from Hyden and Wave Rock. Such a treat! If you get a chance to go that way, don’t miss it. Be prepared to laugh out loud!

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Australian Women Writers Challenge 2020 completed

Australian Women Writers Challenge completed

The Australian Women Writers Challenge 2020 completed itself, or so it seemed. It took very little effort on my part this year. Most years, I commit to review a certain number of books by Australian women. Then I struggle to review the number of books to which I’ve committed. So, at the beginning of this year I decided I’d be really gentle with myself. I opted to review six. That’s known as the Miles level in this challenge.

Here’s a link to the blog I wrote earlier this year about the Challenge.

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Advent preparations for a tough Christmas

preparation for a tough Christmas

We all have a tough Christmas from time to time. We have years we remember as months full of pain and grief or unexpected sorrow and loss. Christmas time can be full of sadness following such an experience. But this year, because of COVID-19, more of us than usual will find Christmas difficult.

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Write your story, enjoy the benefits

Notebook Write your story'

When you write your story, whether a page or two or a book-length memoir or autobiography, you can expect many rewards. They come both when you write and when you share your whole story or a part of it. Every life is different, and so each unique story differs from that of everyone else.

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Hotel quarantine and COVID-19 from the outside

Hotel quarantine - image Tim O'Callaghan

Hotel quarantine for all travellers from overseas as they enter Australia is mandated by the Commonwealth Government. Each state and territory enforces strict conditions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 from outside Australia. Some states use the term ‘medi hotel’ instead of quarantine hotel.

We owe a great debt of gratitude to Australians returning from other parts of the world. Most endure considerable deprivation and hardship through quarantine in order to keep the rest of us safe.

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