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Reviews

Turbans

In an epic novel set during World War II, a young British woman searches for love and her true identity.

-Kirkus Review

 

The author writes with clarity and a deep empathy for his protagonist. Fans of historical fiction will be thoroughly entertained by this moving novel.

-US Review of Books

 

 

A FISHER OF SLAVES

 

The author does well with Elizabeth, in particular, creating a nuanced character who undergoes a believable transformation from casual opponent to fervent abolitionist.

Kirkus Review

 

With its intelligent prose, A Fisher of Slaves will not disappoint historical fiction fans who gravitate to Hornblower-style storytelling with a touch of  Georgian-era romance.

-Foreword Clarion 4 STARS REVIEW

 

Parson’s characters are nuanced and credible, unlike the cutouts found in historical novels that focus more on the action than the players. The author has a keen ear for dialect, but doesn’t overdo it so that it becomes distracting, and the writing is crisp and readable, moving at a steady pace. Once past the initial hurdle, it’s smooth sailing for anyone who appreciates a good yarn.

-BlueInk Review

 

Parsons writes with an obvious depth of knowledge regarding sailing and seamanship of the time. His colorful descriptions of exotic locales create vibrant word paintings. He imbues his characters with traits and behaviors that help them spring to life on the page. He even manages to weave a love story into this high-seas adventure. Readers who enjoy a compelling tale, deftly told, will likely find this journey into centuries past worth the trip.

-US REVIEW OF BOOKS

 


Written in an overall friendly and informative tone, New Zealand; A Personal Discovery starts with an introduction to the country by way of explaining the detailed history of the discovery of New Zealand, its peoples (the Maori) as well as the often exploitative development of the country. Albeit, while the general nature of the book is an autobiographical narrative, this book reads more like a well-developed travelogue which includes a comprehensive history and facts which incites the readers’ curiosity.

In the first chapter, Parsons sets out from Britain with his wife Anne, on a personal quest to live out his longstanding desire to visit and tour around the north and south islands of New Zealand, seeking new experiences and all that encompasses the beauty and majesty of New Zealand. Sequentially, each subsequent chapter brings his adventures in each colorful locale into expansive focus;  he  includes  a  wealth  of  information  including  background  history, modern life, population and local wildlife. His first stop lands him in the largest city in New Zealand; the City of Sails, Auckland, which is the largest city as well as having the highest degree of cultural integration. Parsons notes not only the major sites in the area like the well-known One Tree Hill, located on the summit of  an  extinct volcano,  he  also  notes  lesser  known  monuments,  businesses, parks and he even explores relevant local politics.

Moreover, aside from finding the whole book to be a pleasurable read. I also enjoyed the pervading sense of adventure and wonder that permeated the book as it made you want to go on your own journey of discovery, especially when he describes the breathtaking panoramic views from volcano cones.

Conclusively, New Zealand; A Personal Discovery made for a great, well-written read. The author’s thoughts and perspective come through with lucid clarity. Overall, Dick Parsons made visiting New Zealand a vicarious possibility with this book that deepens the readers’ knowledge and appreciation of the stunning venue which is New Zealand. He included many photos; I found myself wanting to observe additional photos, to expand my reading experience and distributed them throughout the book. Notwithstanding the photo issue, this book was a great read and I do recommend it to all those interested in traveling, whether it be from a chair or in person.

 

 

Thus this sleeping land… was moulded by exploitation, wars and the gospel into this beautiful and productive land we were about to explore.“

Starting with prehistoric times and moving seamlessly to present day, Parsons paints a vivid picture of the three islands that make up New Zealand. The gorgeous green valleys, lovely volcanoes, and panoramic ocean views are well worth the trip. But if a trip to this beautiful country isn’t in the cards for you, then Parsons’ book is the next best thing. Parsons writes with an enchantingly mischievous tone that makes the book a joy to read. Whether he’s writing about a disappointingly modern ferry, the Lynx, or about the tendency of buildings to be moved from one side of the road to the other, Parsons’ writing style makes every adventure intriguing.

His travel book escorts readers from Auckland—which has a fantastic view of the volcano Rangitoto—to Christchurch and many places in between. Along the way, the author points to some interesting parallels between New Zealand and his own native United Kingdom, including the historical significance of railway travel. The birth of New Zealand’s railway in the latter half of the 19th century was particularly important, as the country’s topography made other modes of travel challenging.

Throughout the entire book, readers are treated to numerous intriguing snapshots of historical and cultural information, chief among them being the roots of the native Maoris and the adventures of Captain James Cook. Captain Cook was a famous British explorer and cartographer who roamed the seas during the 18th century. The first recorded circumnavigation of this country and the first known European contact with eastern Australia are among his most well-known accomplishments. Any reader who has even a passing interest in years gone by will find this work of historical tourism to be a well- researched and entertaining read.

Dick Parsons

Dick Parsons