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We are writers mainly from Australia and New Zealand who write speculative fiction with romantic elements. Be it fantasy, paranormal, dark urban fantasy, futuristic and everything in between.

Thursday 21 April 2011

Magic Thursday Giveaway - Tracey O'Hara: Anzac Day

April is a big month for me. Not only is it the release of my 2nd Dark Brethren novel in Australia and New Zealand, but is also has Easter, my youngest son and my step father’s birthday and Anzac day. It is the later I am going to talk about today.

When war broke out, the Great War, the war to end all wars. World War I. My Great Grandfather and his brother, like all patriotic sons of the new Australia, followed two more of their brothers to sign up for the fight. They were shipped off to Egypt to train and then put on some more ships and that was to take them to a destination shrouded in secrecy. The boys were about to step into history books as made up the initial landing party for one of the most defining moments in Australian history, the battle of Gallipoli. My great-grandfather was wounded in that landing with a gunshot to the leg. Which is actually rather fortunate for me, because while he recovered in a London hospital, he met a lovely field army girl who he later married and brought back to Australia.

But the war decimated our family. All of the Keid boys joined up to fight. Of the 6 brothers, only 2 returned. One of them my great-grandfather who bore the scars of war for the rest of his life, to both his body and his soul. I can only imagine the pain my great-great grandmother must have endured after losing 4 of her sons.

So to honour Anzac day – I am going to give away a signed copy of DEATH’S SWEET EMBRACE

What does Anzac day mean to you? Is it just a holiday or is there a more significant meaning for you?

Winner will be announced on Wednesday 27th April.


  1. For me it's more a time to reflect on those people that did give their lives for us. My grandfather came over from england and he served in the english navy prior. So i don't actually have anyone in my immediate family who did serve for NZ.
    This year as with a lot of others we are also thinking about the inappropiate action of the RSA in changing where they get the poppies from for sale. I firmly believe they should continue to be made in NZ.

  2. From as far back as I can remember ANZAC Day has always been about my Father, his brother & my Grandfather. My father fought in New Guinea in WWII. He lost a brother, an Airforce navigator, whose name we have proudly found on the Wall of Remembrance. My Grandfather served in both world wars. WWI in the Australian Light Horse and in WWII the Airforce. Such a contrast, from animal to machine. We reflect, we remember.

  3. Hey Tracey,

    One of my fondest memories is of my grandfather talking about his stint as a radio operator in Papua New Guinea. He talked about the good times he and his unit had, never anything about the fighting or conflict (although I do know it affected him greatly).

    I can also remember him telling us grandkids about how he used to sell and buy items like chocolate on the black market. And how he used to write letters home to Nan and my dad (who was only a baby then). He didn't like being there but he knew he was doing it for his family and others.

    I guess ANZAC Day to me is remembering that the people who went to war longed to be at home with their families and doing their own jobs but thought enough about protecting and serving their country by signing up to keep their family and way of life safe.

    (*No need to put me in this draw, T.)

  4. i consider myself lucky to only had daughters. even now, since 2001 , i been worried about each 1 getting to the age of 18 , still 1 more to go


  5. Anzac Day can definitely spark some deep thinking and subsequent tears - all those soldiers sacrificing their lives for their country. Or the others like your grandfather, Tracey, who had to deal with the physical and emotional scars the rest of their lives. Like Kylie, it's a day of remembrance and gratitude.

    (I have copy, thanks, Tracey)

  6. I think of Anzac Day as I stood in the misty dawn ceremony... and look at my two young sons. I dare hope that they would never have to see the face of death and war. I think of my 19 yr old stepson who has just joined the armed forces and am proud of the man he has become through army life and what he is willing to do ...for us. I think of my grandfather who fought in WW2 and wonder what life must have been like leaving your family, your friends, your job and your home country to fight a War you didn't start. I think of those who fought Wars before them and I am humbled that those people gave their service and their lives for us. I am grateful for the soldiers heart.
    - A Mothers Heart


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