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The Fine Colour of Rust

The Fine Colour of Rust [Kindle Edition]

P. A. O'Reilly
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Product Description


‘Delightful, laugh-out-loud funny and unforgettable. I love this book’ Toni Jordan, author of Addition

‘O’Reilly is funny and touching by turns and her style has a spare intelligence that reminded me of another of my favourite authors, the great Laurie Graham’ DAILY MAIL

‘A delight … The author has a wryly-humorous touch and, once I started reading, I found it hard to put down. It’s peopled with characters who are quirky but credible, and universally recognizable’ NEW BOOKS MAG

‘Can anyone write the story of a whirligig single mother gamely and hilariously fighting development of her small town better than Paddy O'Reilly? No, and nor should they try’ WEEKEND AUSTRALIAN

‘O’Reilly displays a deft poetic touch that elevates the prose from functional to transcendent…This is a story about love: where we look for it, what we do with it and how it shows up in the most unexpected packages. It is warm, moving and funny’ BIG ISSUE, AUSTRALIA

Product Description

If you loved A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian, you’ll love The Fine Colour of Rust.

Single mother Loretta Boskovic may have fantasies about dumping her two kids in the orphanage and riding off on a Harley with her dream lover, but her reality is life in a dusty country town called Gunapan.

A self-dubbed ‘old scrag’, Loretta’s got a big heart and a strong sense of injustice. So, when Gunapan’s primary school is threatened with closure, and there’s a whiff of corruption wafting through the corridors of the local council, she stirs into action. She's short of money, influence and a fully functioning car, but she does have loyal friends who’ll do whatever it takes to hold on to the scrap of world that is home.

The Fine Colour of Rust is a wryly funny, beautifully observed, life-affirming novel about friendship, love and fighting for things that matter. In Loretta Boskovic, Paddy O’Reilly (writing as P A O'Reilly) has created a truly endearing heroine who gives us all permission to dream.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 406 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0007434952
  • Publisher: Blue Door (2 Feb 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005WKGN0O
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #125,072 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fine Voice of a Fighter 26 Jan 2012
By elkiedee VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Loretta describes herself disparagingly as "an old scrag" at all of thirty. Don't believe a word of it. She is a fierce, funny fighter, living in a tiny Australian town which is short of jobs, services and husbands. After 10 years of marriage her husband drove off and never came back.

I really enjoyed this story of a woman fighting to save the local school and other services in the town, standing up for what she believes in and trying to resist the slide into total cynicism and apathy. I'd hate to live in Gunapan, but I'd love to meet Loretta, her kids, and her friend Norm who owns the junkyard.

I hope there are plans to bring O'Reilly's first novel and her short story collection out over here soon, very soon.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Vingnette of Australian life 9 Feb 2012
Left behind in Gunapan by her lousy husband with her two children, Loretta Boskovic drives the dusty road from her house to town, staring out at the scrubby bushland dreaming of rescue by a handsome lover and a car radio that gets something other than racing commentary. In this unique, wryly observed novel, Paddy O'Reilly captures the essence of a lonely Australian bush town and it's ordinary residents with humour and heart.
The author's protagonist is a woman you will find in any small town, she is a single mother juggling child raising with work, a budget that only allows for discounted undies and a longing for an intimate relationship. Loretta copes with the spareness of her life with a wicked sense of humour, and roll-up-your-sleeves and get-on-with-it attitude. Her children are everything to her, even though she regularly fantasises about being whisked away from their whining demands. Raising her two children on her own isn't easy, they miss their father and his sudden (though mercifully brief) reappearance seems to trigger their worst instincts leaving Loretta floundering.
Loretta isn't completely alone, her neighbour, Norm - a laconic and slightly eccentric collector - is her dearest friend and champion. Her best friend is also a single woman on the prowl and in a community like Gunupan everyone knows everyone else.
In an unconscious effort to stave off her loneliness, Loretta rallies the community in an effort to stop the closure of their school and when that is accomplished, finds a new cause involving a shady development deal and corruption Councillors. In a small town like Gunapan the community is the lifeblood of the town and depends on its' residents to fight for it to stay alive.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really pleased. 20 Jan 2012
By S. D. Spicer VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
When this book popped up I was looking for a suitable book for holiday reading. Although the publisher's description put it on the edge of books that I would choose I'm glad that I did.
It is a splendid read, and one that can be read for an hour, put down and picked up a day or two later without having to go back and remind yourself of details that you have forgotten and without which you lose the plot.
The whole book from the cover illustration inwards is warm and joyful. There's ups and downs that bring the book to life and that happy sad feeling at the end when you wish it just went on.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Dr. K. E. Patrick TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Other reviewers have described the plot-line succinctly already: a single mum with two children living in an Australian backwater who has some guts to organise a protest at the plans to close the school.

She's self-deprecating and dreamy, matter-of-fact and yet hopeful. I really came to like her because she seems to have a life with a lot of cards stacked against her, and yet, she doesn't give up. She has some fight to her, and she has some lovely friends (though things aren't always rosy between them).

I really enjoyed the snapshot of life in small-town Australia. O'Reilly gave me a sense of place that managed to be foreign and exotic, and yet, having grown up myself in small-town Texas, strangely familiar. The heat, the space, the struggling shops and the tensions between the have's and have-not's.

One thing most telling about this book is O'Reilly's writing style. Loretta is a plain-speaking, slightly cynical woman.

"[The mayor is] patting his stomach so fast now it looks like he's got a motorized hand. The gorgeous pink has faded. He's dead white. I hope he isn't getting pains in his chest. I had to take a first aid course when I started work ... but the dummy was half the size of Vaughan. I don't think I'd even be able to turn him on his side."

Yet, there's also something warm and honest in her narrative musings as well:
"The trouble with gentle, calm, quiet people I don't know well is that I find myself babbling to fill the spaces between bits of conversation. Useless information wells up out of me and dribbles all over the silence."

I found the book started a bit slow in terms of plot, but don't be fooled: by the time I got half-way, I was looking for excuses to pick it up, immersing myself so much in the world of backwater Gunapan that I burned the dinner and forgot to put the kids to bed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A warming slice of life 21 April 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I downloaded this after reading a strong magazine review and to be honest, because i loved the title! Just one of those books that provides a little taste of life and makes you feel good at the end of it. Well written, witty and poignant, it will make you smile and give you moments of sadness in equal measure. Gentle but clever and nothing like my normal reading choices. I have recommended it several times since reading and yet to find a friend who wasn't touched by it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent story
Read this book in two days, couldn't wait to find out what would happen. Sad, funny, thought provoking throughout. Highly recommend it.
Published 7 months ago by L Greechan
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read
This is a fantastic book which I would highly recommend. Wittily written and a most charming story. I will look out for other PA O'Reilly books
Published 14 months ago by sue brown
4.0 out of 5 stars A well-told story
I enjoyed this story of a small town with people with big hearts. The main character, a single mum, finds herself in the role of a small town Erin Brocavich and takes it on with... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Hazel
2.0 out of 5 stars Fine, but the laughs (along with the characters) seem somehow...
This book is set in Gunapan, a Victorian small town with a lot of dust and Loretta, a single mother looking after her 2 kids after being abandoned by their loser father. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Coaster
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read
Found the book a bit hard to start with but it wasn't long before I was hooked. Just an every day woman with everyday thoughts a bout her life and the kids. Really enjoyed it.
Published 19 months ago by joanna
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable but clichéd
This is definitely readable. I read it on the metro going to and from work. It doesn't require much thought and passed the time well enough. Read more
Published 19 months ago by walkingstick
5.0 out of 5 stars A Refreshing Read
This is a humorous book about the residents of Gunapan, a small town in the Austrailian bush. The story revolves around single mother, Loretta Boskovic and her crusade to save... Read more
Published 20 months ago by C. Colley
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, definitely recommended.
This is an extract from my full review, which you can find on my website: [...]

If you're looking for something fast-paced and where the action explodes off the page,... Read more
Published 22 months ago by Mjm Davidson
5.0 out of 5 stars Could this be the perfect holiday read?
This is an excellent book that is very well written, with a story that is well told.

It is one of those books that are relaxing and a pure joy to read, and I have no... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Doug
4.0 out of 5 stars Laid back read
I've recently read this book and enjoyed it.

I found it was an easy laid back read written in a very relaxed concise style. Read more
Published 23 months ago by B. Robinson
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