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The Anzac Girl [Kindle Edition]

Christine Leigh Langtree
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $2.99

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Book Description

At sixteen, Madeline 'Maddo' Cooper is smarter, stronger and braver than anyone else she knows - especially her boring, pathetic mother, Delores; or Gran as everyone calls her. But Delores has quite a past - though of course, she’s never advertised the fact to her children.

Growing up, Delores was the belle of the small, dusty Queensland town of Coobandra. Her parents thought of her as money in the bank! She would marry well and they’d never have to worry about her again. But life didn't go according to plan; one tiny decision shattered everything for Delores, scattering her family across the state and sending her into exile after making a desperate marriage to an unsuitable man.

Half a lifetime later, Madeline, the product of that union, is too arrogant to even try to imagine the hidden forces that shaped her parents' lives. She doesn't bother to hide the contempt she feels for them.

But the years educate her.

When Maddo's son Jed is born in traumatic circumstances on Anzac Day, an obsession with this Australian and New Zealand military celebration takes hold of her, an obsession which will destroy her life, push her down the slippery slope of alcoholism and alienate her from both her mother and her son.

As a destructive relationship with a violent alcoholic and her descent into her own addiction slowly strip her of all self control, Jed begins to view her with the same contempt she has always shown for her own mother.

Something’s got to give. Who will live and who will die? Can they break the cycle and become a family again before it’s too late?

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Product Details

  • File Size: 488 KB
  • Print Length: 253 pages
  • Publisher: Amazon.com; 1 edition (April 7, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004VS7I8E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #749,511 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Hidden Treasure August 6, 2011
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I wasn't sure what to expect with this book, because it's outside my usual reading genre but I absolutely loved it. The Anzac Girl, set in Australia, is a fascinating glimpse into the complex dramas that can play out between generations. Author Christine Leigh Langtree tells the story of the Cooper family through the perpsectives of grandmother, mother and son, and she effortlessly describes the love, angst, and anger that arise in those twined relations. Langtree is a skilled story teller and an elegant writer. I highly recommend this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved It! June 2, 2011
By LO
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I had a hard time putting this book down once I started it. Bought it on a whim and am glad I did. Great story, I enjoyed it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Serious Read May 5, 2011
The Anzac Girl, set in the rural Australia, deals in universal themes, equally as American as baseball, a sport that makes a strange, macabre appearance throughout a novel about a land where cricket is played. It does so in the form of an antique bat, autographed by Babe Ruth, no less, taken from a Yank in a wartime poker game and passed through several generations, not as a gaming tool or a souvenir, but as the primordial club often pictured by cartoonists in the hands of troglodytes. This is symbolically significant, because the story moves through an atmosphere of brutality, domestic violence and sexual assault, largely fed by what Australians of an earlier era called "Black Drink." One man find such issues difficult to face without blanching, but here there is no sensationalism or wallowing in sordidness, but rather a presentation of things as we know them to be, even when we would rather not. The characters seem as fated by their circumstances as those of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, in a land as Gothic as Carson McCullers' South and noire as Walter Van Tilburg Clark's West.

Langtree has achieved a remarkable tour de force, covering three generations and forty years in a work of just under eighty thousand words. She accomplishes this with flashbacks and fast forwards, telescoping time in and out, speeding up to cover years in a few sentences, and slowing to freeze moments in detailed bas relief. She begins at the end of the story and brings it full circle in spare crafted prose, pulling the reader without effort through a series of discrete, yet seamless episodes, each mercifully short for this reader, since they provided convenient breaks from the author's drill bit intensity.
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