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Monday, August 3, 2015

Patrick's Journey by Roy T. Humphreys


Patrick's Journey by Roy T. Humphreys
ISBN: 9780994193902
Published: October 30, 2014
Published by: Roy Humphreys
Trade Paperback, 340 pages

Book description:

Patrick's Journey is an historical fiction novel based on the real life history of one of Australia's early convict settlers. It could be described as simply an entertaining "romance/adventure" novel. But the story goes deeper than that. The" Journey" in the story is two-fold. There is the physical journey from one mode of existence in Ireland to a completely different one in Australia and the emotional /spiritual journey that accompanies such drastic changes in Patrick's world.

My Review:
Reviewed by Sandra Olshaski

The author has a delightful, elegant way of writing so I was hooked from the very first paragraph. 

This historical novel begins in 1790's Ireland, with young, feisty, hot-tempered Patrick Rourke who bristles under British rule. There are plenty of signs of what would later become known as "The Troubles" as enmity between the Irish and the Brits escalates. Following a trumped-up charge of stealing lead Patrick is sentenced to 7 years in an Australian penal colony, leaving behind his family and his girlfriend, Catherine, with no real hope of ever returning home. 

After a grueling 173-day trip the ship arrives in New South Wales, Australia where eventually Patrick becomes a model worker on a penal farm, impressing those around him with hard work and a good attitude. Time passes, the inevitable happens and Catherine marries another man. Patrick undergoes a transformation as he applies the lessons he's learned about having a positive spirit despite life's challenges and the pleasures of finding joy in new experiences. Despite twists and turns, the story has a satisfactory and happy ending. 

I appreciate the author's research reflected in his detailed descriptions. The reader gets a good idea of life in Ireland and Australia at the time. He vividly describes the tedious life of a convict or anyone, for that matter, who spends seemingly endless days and nights at sea. He describes the composition of the lash used to whip the backs of the unruly in order to maintain discipline.

The epilogue is so interesting and it's there that the reader learns that despite this story being a work of fiction, its inspiration comes from the history of the author's great-grandfather.

I highly recommend this very readable, fast-paced, well-written tale.

Note: This book is rated G

Sandra's disclosure: Thanks to Roy Humphries for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.

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