Comments on my Books

1. An interesting and honest account of the ravages of war and also of individuals’ struggles to maintain their faith and sense of values.
(Kathy Stewart, author)

2. We learn of the bravery of Hazel’s brothers in the face of the enemy, of religious conflict of a Christian mother and her children pitted against a Muslim father and his relatives.
(Martin Line, author)

3. The story is told with warmth. Hazel has an engaging writing style and uses evocative images to put the reader in the picture. There are glimmers of hope, answers to prayer and even humour amidst the tragedies.
(Nola Passmore, author)

Three Miracles – Stories of Life
storiesoflife.net
Three Miracles gives us a glimpse into Hazel Barker’s childhood, growing up in Burma during World War II. This story transports us right back to a night in 1944, when the Allies try to retake Burma. This is what happened at Hazel’s home that night.

A blog post on Stories of Life website about Hazel Barker and her story have been published and can be accessed here:

http://storiesoflife.net/2018/06/06/three-miracles/

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Kathy Stewart’s review of ‘The Sides of Heaven’ by Hazel Barker

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I read the first part of Hazel Barker’s extraordinary memoir, Heaven Tempers the Wind, when it came out and was keen to read the second part of her life story.

I don’t want to give away what happens in the book, but suffice it to say that the deprivations Hazel suffered as a child growing up during the Second World War in what was then Burma are surpassed by the heartbreak and challenges she faced later.

Yet this is not a story of despair, but rather of faith and hope – and ultimately of love.
A heart wrenching, human and inspiring story, well written and beautifully told.

Kathy Stewart

Hazel’s memoir is set in Burma during the turbulent period following the Second World War and the subsequent civil war.

‘The Sides of Heaven’ is the sequel to ‘Heaven Tempers the Wind: Story of a War Child,’ which was shortlisted in the Australia and New Zealand-wide CALEB  competition of 2017.

Armour Books, 2018

 

 

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“The Sides of Heaven” by Hazel Barker reviewed by Beverley Asmus

INSIGHTFUL JOURNEY OF SELF DISCOVERY

Beautifully written in her trademark, intimate style, Hazel Barker takes the reader inside the cloistered world of those who have dedicated their lives to God. However, as interesting as this background may be for some readers, for me it was her personal struggles towards self-discovery that enthralled me the most.
The prequel to this part of Barker’s memoir, “Heaven Tempers the Wind”, shed light on what it was to be a child of war during the occupation of Burma. While everything familiar was breaking down around her once sheltered life, Barker drew strength on her unwavering faith in God for her survival, always believing in a better future to come.
Unfortunately, that better life did not arrive with the end of war. Family battles, specifically with a brutal father, had to be fought and more sibling lives lost. Although she is able to complete her education, finding friendship and possible romance, Barker feels called to offer her services to the Church. In many ways this is where her biggest life challenges begin, as important issues are raised about spirituality versus religiosity.
Barker’s honesty makes this compelling reading and leaves us wanting to read more about her incredible life journey

The Sides of Heaven is the sequel to Heaven Tempers the Wind: Story of a War Child, which was shortlisted in the Australia and New Zealand-wide CALEB Competition of 2017.

 

 

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Last Caravan to Carmelsara by Jack Garrety

Adventure, magic and a slow burn romance between two people who can’t stand each other.
The Torian, head of the Commonwealth, is dying and his replacement has not yet been found.

Neah, a warrior princess and former slave, receives a prophecy that the new Torian will be one of 800 refugees in a caravan fleeing the invading Shaelene army. Shayla, a dark sorceress and Queen of the Shaelene, is equally determined to find and kill the new Torian before he, or she, can be anointed.

Caleb, a disgraced Commander in the Commonwealth army, has been charged with protecting the caravan. Provided with only seven soldiers and a duplicitous wizard to help him he is given little chance.

Trapped within the forced intimacy of the caravan Caleb and Neah must try and thrust aside their bitter hostilities in order to protect the new Torian from the marauding Shaelene, Shayla’s assassins and a host of mythical, vicious creatures that stand between them and the safety of Carmelsara. In doing so they will have to leave the relative safety of their natural distrust and together weave something new and untried because in a world overtaken by greed only love has the power to save it. If they fail the whole world will fall into decades of darkness.

Review of Last Caravan to Carmelsara by Hazel Barker
This is a story of courage and endurance. The terse and potent prose grabs readers and compel them to keep turning the page. Vivid descriptions enhance the story and give a clear sense of time and place.
The story unfolds itself without rushing or dragging and each scene adds to the story. I particularly enjoyed the prison scene at the beginning of the book and the battle scenes.
The main characters have distinct voices, flaws and virtues with clear goals that influence the plot. The secondary characters are also well-rounded. My favourite character is Caleb. I empathise with him and admire his fighting prowess and loyalty to his men.
The book was an enjoyable read, although I found it difficult to relate with Neah until much later in the story.

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Talk at Moreton Bay View Club

Here are some photos taken at the Redlands Sporting Club, during my talk to members of the Moreton Bay View Club in March 2018.

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Vice President Diana Wilson and I

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The beautiful banner of the Club

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Author Talk 23rd Feb 2018

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My grateful thanks to Maria from the Victoria Point Library, my MC,  Jane and all the staff from the Victoria Point library for taking such lovely photos and promoting my Author Talk.

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Book Launch of ‘The Sides of Heaven’

IMG_3252IMG_324720180223 Hazel Barker A3 poster (A2820473) (1)IMG_3253

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