It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

This weekly meme is hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

I've just returned from a 10-day trip to Melbourne during which I met my new grandchild and celebrated my father's 90th birthday so this will be a quick/short post.

Surprisingly, in between catching up with family, I managed to finish two books, Past Encounters  by Davina Blake and The Narrative of Deserter Burman  by Greg Pyers.

This week I intend to finish The Blood On My Hands by Shannon O'Leary and follow this up with When the Sky Fell Apart by Caroline Lea.

What I Read Over the past Two Weeks

Past Encounters by Davina Blake

From the moment Rhoda Middleton opens one of her husband’s letters and finds it is from another woman, she is convinced he is having an affair. But when Rhoda tracks her down, she discovers the mysterious woman is not his lover after all, but the wife of his best friend, Archie Foster. There is only one problem - Rhoda has never even heard of Archie Foster. Devastated by this betrayal of trust, Rhoda tries to find out how and why her husband, Peter, has kept this friendship hidden for so long. Her search leads her back to 1945, but as she gradually uncovers Peter’s wartime secrets she must wrestle with painful memories of her own. For if they are ever to understand each other, Rhoda too must escape the ghosts of the past. Taking us on a journey from the atmospheric filming of Brief Encounter, to the extraordinary Great March of prisoners of war through snow-bound Germany, this is a novel of friendship, hope, and how in the end, it is the small things that enable love to survive.

The Narrative of Deserter Burman by Greg Pyle

In 1834 Private Benjamin Burman is on the run to a new life in America. But the British Army does not suffer deserters; Benjamin is captured and banished to Van Diemen’s Land. Yet even when his sentence is over, his punishment is not done, for he is forever to be reminded of his disgrace by a thick, black D tattooed into his ribcage.
It will take the greatest tragedy of his life, awaiting him still in the gold-mining town of Daylesford, to set him free.

What I'm Reading Today

The Blood On My Hands by Shannon O'Leary

Set in 1960s and '70s Australia, "The Blood on My Hands" is the dramatic tale of Shannon O'Leary's childhood years. O'Leary grew up under the shadow of horrific domestic violence, sexual and physical abuse, and serial murder. Her story is one of courageous resilience in the face of unimaginable horrors.
The responses of those whom O'Leary and her immediate family reach out to for help are almost as disturbing as the crimes of her violent father. Relatives are afraid to bring disgrace to the family's good name, nuns condemn the child's objections as disobedience and noncompliance, and laws at the time prevent the police from interfering unless someone is killed.
"The Blood on My Hands" is a heartbreaking-yet riveting-narrative of a childhood spent in pain and terror, betrayed by the people who are supposed to provide safety and understanding, and the strength and courage it takes, not just to survive and escape, but to flourish and thrive.

What I Hope to Read Next

When the Sky Fell Apart by Caroline Lea

June 1940. The black cloud of warn brewing in Europe remains far from the rustic, sea-swept Channel Island of Jersey. That's until ten-year-old Claudine sees the burning man on the beach. Within weeks, 12,000 German troops have landed, bringing with them a terrifying regime led by the brutal Commandant. In the midst of the occupation, Claudine is taken under the wing of Edith, the island's brilliant herbalist. Together with local fisherman Maurice and the English doctor, Carter, they form an unlikely yet powerful friendship. But as the Germans' iron grip on Jersey tightens, an unforeseen event forces them to make a most difficult-and perilous-decision.


  1. Hi. These all look like good reads. When The Sky Falls looks good. Enjoy your books. Happy reading. :)

    1. I've just started When The Sky Falls. So far so good.

  2. ENJOY your reading week.

    Wonderful on your new grandchild and your dad's 90th.

    CONGRATS on both events.

    Silver's Reviews
    My It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

    1. Certainly two momentous occasions! Thanks, Elizabeth.