Tag Archives: review

The edge of the World

Congratulations Coral Waight for launching your travel book The Edge of the World. This first book in her travel series, Planning to the ‘Nth’ is now available at Amazon.com .

For anyone of any age wanting to experience Tasmania, this book is a must. Written in an easygoing, humorous style the reader will discover hidden gems when they travel the Apple Isle with Coral.

Coral’s comments

‘I’m pleased to say, that after weeks of anguish, involving much banging of my head on the desk, screaming at my computer and damning all technology to the depths of Hades, my travel blog is now up and running. I will be describing my experiences while finding my way around, first Tasmania, then New Zealand, England and back to New Zealand. I invite you to join me on the journey. The website is coralwaightravel.com. Note there’s only one ‘t’ in the address.’ 

To discover more of the history, pitfalls and delights of Tasmania visit to her blog. If you click on the cover of the book it will take you to Amazon.com where you can download a copy of The Edge of The World . A button on the site allows you to download a Kindle eReader with one click if you haven’t already got one.

If you’d like to know more about Coral you can visit her on Facebook.

On her 60th birthday, Coral Waight set out in her little hatchback, thermos and Esky in the boot, to begin the first of four road trips around the island of Tasmania, across Bass Strait from where she lives in Melbourne, Australia. She planned to the ‘nth’ degree, but nothing could have prepared her for getting stuck on the side of a mountain, in the dark, with her petrol tank on empty. Nothing prepared her for being on her own in a caravan park at Arthur River in the middle of a violent storm, or forgetting she gets sea-sick and spending a boat cruise around Tasman Island with her head in a bucket.

The wild, untamed west coast contrasted with the ethereal beauty of Great Oyster Bay and the fishing villages of the east. Cheap country pubs offered friendliness and warmth – and the odd hole in a window taped over with cardboard and packing tape – more like the homes of friends or relatives than hotels. The giant ferns and the great trees of the rainforests nurtured and replenished her spirit, and the history, white and indigenous, not too far in the past, filtered through everything.

Told with gentle humour and keen observation. this book will make readers want to visit Tasmania for themselves, all the while getting to know and like a woman whose unfailing good humour shines through the adventures she encounters.

Wineglass Bay Photo by Bjorn Christian Torrissen

A comment on Facebook by Jane says…

I felt as if I was right beside you in your adventures, Coral! I can’t wait to read more…it’s an inspirational story told with empathy and humor.  Congratulations on persevering and mastering the technology side of things too …very impressive.

I agree and I’m sure everyone associated with the Mordialloc Writers’ Group feels the same way. We wish Coral all the very best in her writing career.

Barb Biggs: The Accidental Renovator. A review

A Paris Story

How do you accidentally buy a Paris apartment?

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This is a smart, snazzy, witty story set in the romantic city of Paris. As I expected, I am really enjoying reading Barbara Biggs’ latest book The Accidental Renovator. It is a sassy, ironic, exuberant book that holds your interest from start to finish. Smart, funny and written about the real world in a way that will make you sit up and take notice.

Barbara Biggs.jpg

Barbara Biggs is also author of In Moral Danger, The Road Home and Chat Room. At 14 Barbara’s grandmother sold her to a pedophile; at 16 she was in a psyche hospital; at 18 she was a prostitute in Japan; at 19 she escaped Cambodia weeks before it fell to the Khmer Rouge; at 21 she caused national headlines and received death threats; at 30 she became a journalist. By 40 Barbara was a property millionaire. Just imagine her life in the years following. So how did Aussie Barb end up writing about renovating an apartment in Paris?

Incorrigible romantic, writer and renovator Barbara Biggs thought she knew about sex and real estate. Then she went to Paris. The self-described ‘foot-in-mouth Aussie chick’ can’t help ‘just looking’ at apartments for sale. Big mistake. She speaks little French, knows no one in Paris and has never thought of living there. But when the agent assures her the owner will insist on the asking price, she makes a low offer ‘just for fun’. It is accepted—and her life goes haywire. Biggs smuggles in a handsome Australian builder to renovate the apartment.
But he doesn’t speak French, doesn’t have any tools, and when the budding romance goes sour he vanishes and Barbara’s dream renovation becomes a nightmare. Undeterred, she joins the Lazy Pigs Millionaires’ Club and is soon lunching in grand chateaux, partying until dawn and learning about continental men in the nicest possible way. Then she writes about it.

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Imagine my surprise on reading the fist page of The Accidental Renovator to see, ‘I’d come to visit my French friend Lucy in Nancy, a university town three hours east of Paris.’ I was immediately back in Novel Writing Class, along with Barb and Lucy Mushita in the Professional Writing and Editing Course at Holmesglen TAFE. At that time Barb  was busy writing  In Moral Danger. Later, Lucy published her novel Chinongwa and I launched Pickle to Pie.

In Moral Danger

Biggs’ first book was a 2003 autobiography about her life up to the age of 22. The book tells of her sexual abuse from the age of 14 by a well-known criminal barrister. It explains the damaging after effects following her abuse, including time spent in a psychiatric hospital, escaping Cambodia weeks before it fell to the Khmer Rouge and being a prostitute in Japan. It also describes how she attempted suicide four times, received death threats and caused national headlines – all before the age of 22.

In Moral Danger   The Road Home: What Price Redemption?      Product Details

The Accidental Renovator shows how far Barb has come, not only in her life but as a writer. Both Lucy and I wish Barb good health, joy and every success.