About Me

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Victoria, Australia
I am an author of Young Adult Fiction books. I worked as a teacher in the Pacific Islands for seven years. Whilst in the Solomon Islands I taught PSSC English before the ethnic tension in 2000 forced a change of plans. I love Pacific literature, art and music. You can find me on Facebook at Beth Montgomery Author.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Beyond the Coral Sea by Michael Moran

Beyond the Coral Sea
(Harper Collins, 2003)
I borrowed this book from the library and unfortunately it's taken me about a month to read. That's not because it's a crappy read, it's actually engrossing, and packed with dozens of interesting historical accounts. It is a weighty tome though, and the way it flits between a modern travelogue and a recount of the last few hundred years of the history of Papua New Guinea makes it difficult to follow at times. But I loved it. I want a copy of my own now.
   The complete title is Beyond the Coral Sea: Travels in the Old Empires of the South-West Pacific. There is so much to this book: the business empires of 'Queen Emma', the failed Utopian settlement of Port Breton, the fascinating accounts of flying witches, the volcanic devastation of Rabaul, the splendour of the Trobriand Islands, the trading kastam of kula... I could go on and on.
   I learnt a lot about meddling colonial Europeans and their enduring legacies. The author's love of the area shone through and I will gladly read this book again and again as a handy historical reference.
   Now I'll have to save up to visit these eastern islands of PNG. They sound remarkable!

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