Stephen Crabbe’s “Conflict on Kangaroo Island” is an engaging story set on Kangaroo Island, South Australia. With a 1913 setting, this historical fiction wraps up engrossing characters, the island’s natural wealth, avaricious businesspeople, and proponents of preserving natural resources. It’s a compelling read, indeed.
It is 1913. Several botanical teams and political authorities are attempting to restore the natural beauty of Kangaroo Island, South Australia, and preserve some rare species of plants and animals that can only be found on this island. However, some avaricious land-grabbers of the island are more interested in accumulating their profits by selling high-priced native produce to Germans who may use it against their country’s solidarity! Is there anyone who will hold back this covetous business amid war tension?
On the other side, Pamela Pearce (Pansy), the protagonist, is determined to show her caliber and ability as a talented and independent woman. Nevertheless, her family and community are not all by her side, mainly due to her bold demeanor which was unacceptable in those days. Living in a community that is more inclined to maintain a status quo, her keenness to protect the downtrodden segment of society from the wrath of authorities opens up another wave of incongruence for her. How will she handle all that while dealing with her inner struggle?
“Conflict on Kangaroo Island” by Stephen Crabbe is Book 1 in the “South Australian Saga” series. Comprising 181 pages, this immersing story connects readers with several lively characters of remote Kangaroo Island where natural beauty, historical events, and peoples’ interests are all well intertwined by the author. In addition to this, the narrative is craftily developed and delineates each character carefully about its place in the story. This fascinating story will keep readers engaged with its unique topic that glimpses at the South Australian Island of 1913 before the war where the nexus of good and evil forces shapes the future of this island.
Initially, the pace of the story was a little bit slow; however, in the middle, it solves several riddles and mysteries and unveils many deceiving characters that were part of the game. On the other side, the arrival of the Botanical team brings new hope for many islanders, and at the same time, it becomes a source of annoyance for many greedy businesspeople. Can the Adelaide team tackle all these conspiracies? You can find this all in this compelling epic saga!
I felt delighted at how beautifully the author demystifies this historical fiction with verifiable facts. Using fears, hopes, animosities, friendship, and enthusiasm to weave a lively and fascinating tale, he masterfully incorporates emotions. I adore how beautifully he draws the highs and lows of his characters. As Pansy performs her job enthusiastically and help her friend Amy recognize her value, she also struggles inwardly. Moreover, the role of a botanical team gives more depth to the story. I especially like the role of Mrs. Margaret, a botanical artist, appraising Amy’s artwork and bringing it out to the world generously to encourage the little lonely girl. Furthermore, there is the tragic side of the story that brings you in contact with members of the Dodd family, who were more often involved in Kangaroo Island’s rapacious game.
Inclusively, all the elements of the story are well interconnected. The author skillfully portrays the background setting of those times that mingles appositely with the hopes and desires of the Islanders. Even the secondary characters have a profound impact on the story. Moreover, you will see the themes of suspense, fear, hope, friendship, and jealousy go side by side. I recommend it to the fans of historical fiction who love WWI stories.
- Title: Conflict on Kangaroo Island (A South Australian Saga Book 1)
- Author: Stephen Crabbe
- Genre: Historical Australian and Oceanian Fiction
- Publication Date: 20 July 2016
- ISBN or ASIN: B01IHHA9Y4
- Number of Pages: 181
- Minimum Audience Age: 18
(Note: 0=none, 1=a few, 2=considerable, 3=pronounced, 4=excessive)
- Sexual themes: 0
- Religious themes: 1
- Violence, self-harm, etc.: 1
- Crude language, expletives, swearing, etc.: 2
- Other adult themes: 2
- Content: 5 stars
- Writing Style: 5 stars
- Appeal to Target Audience: 5 stars
- Uniqueness: 5 stars
- Editing: 5 stars
- Other factors: 4 stars
- Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
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One thought on “A Book Review by Ashiyya: “Conflict on Kangaroo Island” by Stephen Crabbe”
I’ve always wanted to experience Australia’s natural beauty and one-of-a kind biodiversity. So, while I’m saving up, I’ll guess I can read this book. The strong female characters are another plus, on my book. Thank you!
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