#11 The Opal Desert – Di Morrissey

20 Jan
The Opal Desert - Di Morrissey

The Opal Desert – Di Morrissey

Goodreads rating: 3.58 (71 ratings)

My rating: 6/10

Why it’s on the list: I actually won this book from sending off a ‘Woman’s Day’ puzzle book entry. i won about 4 books I believe.

First published: November 1st, 2011 by Pan MacMillan Australia

Genre: Modern Fiction, Australiana, Drama

The Opal Desert is a fictional book surrounding 3 Australian women, in very different stages of life and areas of Australia. The book is separated into 3 sections, one for each women. It begins with Karen, a woman in her mid-40s whose famous sculptor husband dies suddenly, and who’s mother passes soon after. With older step children, and no children of her own, she is now lost as she spent most of her adult life devoted to her husbands work and reputation. A former art student, she decides to get away to the quiet outback of Australia and ends up at the mining community Opal Lake, where she meets the woman who is the focus of the second part of the book.

Shirley is almost 80, and lives a reclusive life in her childhood holiday home in the hills of Opal Lake. After being betrayed by her partner long ago, she has never found the motivation to leave her home. She inspires Karen to start painting again, and with Karen losing her mother, they develop a special bond.

The third woman is Anna, a professional runner from Adelaide who comes to Opal Lake to do some bar work while she figures out what she wants to do with her life. To be honest that is all you really get to know about her, because whilst there is a whole chapter meant to be about her, it ends up being more about Shirley and Karen. Anna seems to be a pretty obsolete character in this book, apart from the fact that she ends up revealing some personality traits of some other characters that wouldn’t have happened otherwise.

When I opened this book, I was really apprehensive about reading it. The first paragraph is:

The desert. Red soil, white domed mullock heaps, a landscape scarred by acne eruptions of excavations, the excreta of miners’ enthusiasm and despair. Among the green smudged hillocks, dwellings were burrowed into the hillside. Other barely discernible buildings looked temporary. What was permanent was hidden below.

This made me cringe. It sounded like a book I would have been forced to read in high school, and it totally put me off. I’m glad I persevered though because the rest of the story is nice. It’s interesting, and relatable. However it’s no masterpiece. I enjoyed it because I’m from Australia and I liked reading about the landscape and the places, and when they were talking about Sydney (where I live) it was cool to be able to know the places they were talking about. But to be blunt, I wouldn’t have picked this book had I not won it, and I wouldn’t recommend people from other countries to read it.

I liked the characters and the setting, the story was easy to read, there was a little bit of mystery and wonder about what was going to happen, but nothing extraordinary.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


a Sydney single’s face off with modern dating misery

A Poem A Day

Brendan Stoneham - Poet

Tien's Blurb

My reading blurbs

Daily (w)rite


Grow up proper

A raw view on life

Disciples Perspective

Restoring Civility to Conversation & Conservatism to Theology

the bippity boppity beautiful blog

let's create something beautiful - Katie Ann De Crescenzo

The ToiBox of Words

A look inside the mind of a writer who loves comic books, vinyl records, chocolate, and a good film.

Adora Writes

Sense will always have charm for me.

book'd out

Book Reviews and News

Interesting Literature

A Library of Literary Interestingness

The Neighborhood

The Story within the Story

Marpay Fitness

Unleash The Lion Within!

L.M. Sacasas

Technology, Culture, and Ethics

Pros Write

More workplace success--without platitudes

you said it...

If they didn't publish their hatred, it wouldn't have appeared here.

Maija's Fantasy Reads

Fantasy and other speculative fiction book blog

The Angry Grey Cat Reads

Reading, Drinking, Reading, Napping...Reading

Deb Deb Reviews

Two Debby's who love to read

Eva Genin



Find me at http://fairweatherdiver.blogspot.com/

Cynthia Stacey

Young Adult Paranormal Author - Expect the Unexpected!


“A room without books is like a body without a soul.” - Cicero

reading is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

"I like the scars because I like the stories. Bravery, stupidity, pain - none of them come free." - Jessica Martinez, Virtuosity

Book Chatter

Chatting with friends about books and life...

All The Books I Can Read

1 girl....2 many books!


lover of written words

Just Reading For Fun

A fine WordPress.com site

Lucybird's Book Blog

Book reviews and discussion

The Word Jar

Book reviews. Publishing news. Wordy views.


Cui multum datum est multum quaeretur ab eo

love & other legumes

Healthy vegetarian home-cooking...not just tofu & lentils

TheCoevas official blog

Strumentisti di Parole/Musicians of words


An Endeavor To Explore The Uncertanity

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences

Thought Catalog

Thought Catalog is a digital youth culture magazine dedicated to your stories and ideas.

Radiance Project NZ

beauty through balance & nature

Book Journey

Continuing adventures of a true bookaholic...

We're Jumpin' Books

Jumpin' through Random Books, One Book at a Time

%d bloggers like this: