From the voice of rural Australia (and that’s a helluva big voice), a wonderful review of The Honourable Thief.

Sincere thanks, Weekly Times and Carolyn Exton. I’m truly delighted you enjoyed the read!


Weekly Times

… and even if you didn’t – in response to those of you who live outside Australia and New Zealand and have asked about purchasing the book I penned to accompany the TV series, The Pacific: In the Wake of Captain Cook with Sam Neill, I have it on good authority that it will land in your postbox fairly quickly if you order it online through outlets such as this one.

Then, there’s always the e-Book. Though you’ll be missing out a bit because the real, papery book, comes in a lovely, hardcover format with a gorgeous cover and jammed full of illustrations.


See what I mean? Lovely. Exactly what you want to see resting on your bedside table.

As for locals, you’ll find the book in all good (and some bad) bookstores. Or, if you can’t be bothered fighting the crowds, you can order it on the Harper Collins website. Though I’m a big advocate for supporting bricks-and-mortar bookstores. So how about you pop out during your lunchbreak, stretch the legs, and grab a copy at your local?

You won’t regret it. I promise.

3CR studio shot

Blustery spring days are never my favourite of the many and splendid varieties Melbourne throws up in a given week. But today I had good reason to brave the swirling winds that seem hell-bent on throwing bucketsful of plane tree conker fuzz and road grit into my eyes and transforming my hair into a skein of insta-dreadlocks. You see, I had a date with the wonderful Jan Goldsmith on her show with David McLean on 3CR Melbourne, Published… Or Not.

Jan really knows her stuff, so her enthusiasm for The Honourable Thief means a great deal. You can hear our chat here, along with a fantastic conversation between David and author Louisa Deasey, whose new book, A Letter From Paris, has just risen to the top of my ‘must read’ list. What a story! Well worth confronting the icky weather.

I’ve no hope of avoiding the rather nasty day outside anyway, with a date looming tonight at the MCG to watch the Tigers attempt to retain their place at the top of the AFL heap. Yeah, yeah. Tragic. I know.

Too bad.


When Andrew Ruhl of Underbelly fame (infamy?) volunteered to write a review of The Honourable Thief , I was half expecting to wake up with a disarticulated racehorse’s head under the duvet one morning if my novel displeased him (with apologies to The Godfather).

So it was with some relief that time ticked by with nothing more threatening appeared at my side than my delightful bedfellow, husband Andrew (not Ruhl – Anastasios. Too many Andrews in my life. But that’s another story)

Best of all? The pacy review copied below, which is now doing the rounds of Australia’s daily papers via syndication.


TOWNSVILLEEYE Andrew Ruhl review

Nightlife pic

To those of you… OK, let’s be honest, now… ALL of you out there who can’t be stuffed working out the whole ‘fast-forward the four hour podcast till you get to the one hour point’ thing, I’m delighted to say that the ABC in their/its infinite wisdom decided to make a standalone feature of my 30 minute interview with Sarah Macdonald on her ‘Nightlife’ nationwide program. So, lazy bones. No excuses now. This link will take you directly to our chat, which really was lots of fun to do. We talk flawed heroes, writing for TV and film vs. writing a novel, art market shenanigans, fakes and forgeries and, of course, archaeology and history.

Good times.


When ABC Radio calls you in for a chat with the fabulous Sarah MacDonald on the nationwide programme, Nightlife, and tells you that you’re going to be transmitting from ‘The Tardis’…


… the logical assumption is that you’ve either misheard, or the person giving the instructions is a Doctor Who tragic who has been at the controls for so long that they have control-panel fever and lost the capacity to distinguish between truth and fiction.

Wrong. Documentary evidence below.


Science fiction juggernauts aside, Sarah and I had a lovely conversation, wandering across a broad landscape of topics from archaeology to history, Kevin Rudd’s uncanny resemblance to the boy detective, Tintin, and the dodgy shenanigans that go on in the art auction market. Not to mention, of course, The Honourable Thief,  and The Pacific: In the Wake of Captain Cook with Sam Neill – the book and series, and the process of bringing them to life. It was great speaking with someone who engaged so closely with The Honourable Thief and understood the wider themes of the story. An absolute highlight.

If you’re interested, you’ll find a link to the podcast here. You’ll find my bit starting just after one hour into the program. And, to those of you with limited technological experience, don’t worry – you can scroll forward to get to the right spot in the podcast.



A funny exchange with a friend recently. Already rather bemused by my fairly colourful/convoluted/dysfunctional career path, she overheard me discussing my forthcoming publications with another friend.

“A COOKBOOK? WHAT!? You’ve written a bloody COOKBOOK now?” she exclaimed.

No, I explained. Not a ‘cookbook’. But a ‘Cook book’. As in – a book about James Cook, to accompany the series I co-wrote that’s currently screening on the FOXTEL History channel. If you’re interested, there’s a smorgasbord of tasty clips, outtakes and extras available on the FOXTEL site.

Occasionally I’m involved with something that I’m very proud to see my name on. This would be one of those projects. Although, as in the screen-grab below, it seems that Sam will be credited with authorship of the book in the popular imagination. And that’s quite alright with me – it certainly won’t hurt sales any.

Who am I to complain, anyway? According to the Wikipedia page for ‘The Water Diviner’, the film was based on the book I co-wrote with my wonderful husband, Andrew. Of course, it was the other way round – we adapted the script (co-written by the brilliant Andrew Knight) into a novel. But try to tell Wikipedia that (I’ve tried. Believe me). Now it’s been published far and wide – an authentic example of ‘fake news,’ not to mention a cautionary tale showing how careful you have to be if you plan to use Wikipedia as a source of information.

It’s a very entertaining interview with Chrissie, Sam and Brownie, by the way. The man can certainly turn on the charm. Clip available here.