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Lest We Forget

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As a dim-witted young soldier, the approach of ANZAC Day (April 25th) meant pretty much two things: a day off regular work, and a marathon drinking session–the latter starting around 4am and ending a couple of days later when I’d wake with an epic hangover, sometimes with a fat lip or black eye, wondering who the hell I’d mistakenly taken-on this time. Or worse still, waking up next to a warthog. You know who I mean; the love-child of Oprah Winfrey and Frankenstein’s monster–that nightmare situation where you contemplate chewing your arm off instead of sliding it out from beneath her, so as not to awaken the beast…

‘Cos after all, I’m a real oil painting.

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All joking aside, I knew what ANZAC Day meant. What it really was about. Is about. We all did…

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In short, it was originally a day to honour the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli against the Ottoman Empire during World War 1, but has since been expanded to broadly commemorate those ANZACs who ‘served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations’ as well as ‘the contribution and suffering of all those who have served’.

As dim-witted as I was (and with my mind drifting to all the wonderful booze I was soon about to consume), when I stood to attention in uniform, my mates either side, watching the dawn break, jumping when the big guns fired, listening to the Last Post, the tears would always come. Along with the realization that what was happening, what we were part of, what we were there to commemorate, was something bigger than us all. Something none of us–military or not–should ever be allowed to forget.

‘They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, We will remember them.

We will remember them.

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LEST WE FORGET

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Luccia Gray author spotlight challenge

Luccia Gray is the author of the Eyre Hall Trilogy–a sequel to both Charlotte Bronte’s 1847 novel Jane Eyre, and Jean Rhys’s 1966 novel Wide Sargasso Sea. She is also an English teacher, a multi award-winning blogger, and when she finds the time, a constant reader. Over the month of April, Luccia has been posting ‘Author Spotlights’ on her blog ‘Rereading Jane Eyre’ and has been kind enough to include me in the list. Sweet… Click on the links below and check it out. And while you’re there, take the time to look around, learn more about Luccia and her work…

Rereading Jane Eyre

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘M’ is for Matt Cairns author of Cold Blooded

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Why do I recommend Cold Blooded?

I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to follow the absorbing plot of this exciting, action-packed, surprising, and thrilling read. I was impressed by the plausible, supernatural element, which is associated with scientific experiments related to genetic engineering in a paramilitary organization. I loved the idyllic setting, in a small rural and remote location in New Zealand, in the middle of a severe thunderstorm, which adds to the tension and atmosphere.

All the characters are well-developed so that I cared about what happened to the ‘good’ ones and felt terrified of the ‘evil’ ones. There are some violent scenes, but not more than are necessary to push the plot forward. I liked the way I was challenged to consider that violence could be the only option when ‘good’ and…

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