Tag Archives: Bruce Cooke

The Campbell Odyssey by Bruce Cooke

22 Mar

Bruce Cooke

The Campbell Odyssey

Bruce Cooke’s “Campbell Odyssey” is a touching story about two very different people who met and fall in love in the early Australia era. At the heart of The Campbell Odyssey is a love story of Elizabeth and Rory. Elizabeth loves her family so much that she sacrifices her wants for her family’s happiness, moves to Australia and agrees to marry a much older man.  Rory, on the other hand, returns to Australia to relieve the shame he has brought to his family because of his debonair and rakish lifestyle.

Elizabeth and Rory were enemies at first. It took a boating accident that put Elizabeth, her husband, and Rory in mortal danger. It is during this scene that Rory learns about the importance of responsibility and Elizabeth starts to cares about him. Although the love between Elizabeth and Rory is deep, Elizabeth remains loyal to her husband and Rory has no choice but to leave her.

At this point Susan, a dignified convict woman who is falsely accused of stealing a brooch, enters the picture as she is being transported to Australia. Susan is the face of era in which injustice often befalls convict people and lower class people. Bruce Cooke did an excellent job exploring the lives of the people who have been sent to Australia around the 19th century, and doesn’t shy away from the lives of convicts, the women who prostitute themselves and men who become thieves.

The Campbell Odyssey is a wonderful story about the inspirational life-changing journey of Rory Campbell. This story shows how Rory changed from a careless young rake into a mature and empathetic man who discovers Australia’s sheep industry. The Campbell Odyssey is a magnificent story which successfully describes a dark era of 19th century. It is very well researched and full of accurate facts.

Reviewer: Aretha


The Baringup Dynasty by Bruce Cooke

23 Dec

Bruce Cooke

The Baringup Dynasty

Desert Breeze Publishing

It’s been a long time since I’ve read an excellent novel that focused more on story and character development and less on sex. The Baringup Dynasty is a captivating story told in the most creative way by Bruce Cooke. In the first chapter we meet Danny Stevens, a war veteran with a bloody past headed on a train with his new boss Jonathon Bailey, a man who has had a less fortunate childhood himself.

Now here’s where it gets interesting! The chapters that follow alternate between Danny’s past and Jonathon’s past. It is in these chapters that Danny and Jonathon really come to life and develop into three dimensional characters. Bruce’s writing style is lean as he conveys just the highlights of each man’s life that has made him into the person we are reading about today. The Baringup Dynasty just would not have been the same without these details.

We follow each man’s life journey until we get back to the present train ride. Then Bruce pushes the story forward so we can see where each character ends up. Although Jonathon’s story really kept me glued to the pages, it is his daughter Robbie who put a smile on my face. Determined to do anything a man can do, this smart mouthed, independent woman definitely put a smile on my face. The Baringup Dynasty is a spectacularly told story and all credit goes to Bruce Cooke.

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