Book review of the day: The Golden Bush

You can help. Send your book review to [email protected] and we will put it up when it is your turn. Please set your submission out with the name of the book, then the author and then describe in your own words what the book is about. Also if you happen to be a commenter please include your username.

This year we are going to review books daily until the reviews run out. By doing this for individual books this gives people a chance to do their own research on the books and authors by using the links provided and not miss out by being bombarded by a whole lot at once like we have done in previous years.

Each post is set out as comprehensively as possible with the name of who submitted it, the name of the book and author and a short review in the form of a comment from whoever submitted it.

Todays review came from Wally Betts’ Sock.


The Golden Bush

Originally published by A.H. & A.W. Reed, but updated editions are available from time to time

Wally Betts’ Sock said: “This little gem of a book was first published in 1953, as the first work of an author who went on to write another six books over the next thirty years, mostly concerning his life in NZ as an immigrant from Scotland in 1925 at the age of 19. It’s one of those books that you see in used bookshops remaindered down to a couple of Dollars these days, but Sutherland writes eloquently and lovingly of his relationship with his wife Sam, their black cocker spaniel, Angus. His love of the back country; fishing, hunting and gold prospecting also feature prominently; the couple’s determination to get by in times that were very hard, provide context for the tale.
His story in ‘The Golden Bush’ takes us back to the early 1930s when, after the 1929 Murchison earthquake, Sutherland moved to a settlement near Gowanbridge to work on the rebuild of the area. He got married, bought a truck and got a dog then set to work hauling roading materials. The Depression of the 1930s ended his career as a truck driver so he left the truck parked under a tree. Sutherland, his wife and the dog set out to work a gold claim at the top of the Howard River in the Travers Range, living under canvas for over two years. When the Sutherlands returned to civilisation, the truck was still as it had been left.

All in all, this is an account of a country that doesn’t exist anymore, populated nowadays by individuals that Sutherland would barely be able to identify as human. ”

If you have read this book or it reminds you of a story or something then please go ahead and share in the comments section below.



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