Best Book Publishers UK | Austin Macauley Publishers

By: Dianne L Thompson

The Burden Within

Pages: 494 Ratings: 5.0
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Born into a wealthy family in England in 1942, Christopher could’ve expected a privileged life. It was not to be. At six years of age, he entered boarding school. The burden of undiagnosed dyslexia led to an aversion to schoolwork, and violent sexual abuse from a fellow boarder became the impetus for leaving school. He embarked on a life of hard manual labour, before returning to his parents’ farm, but continual frustrations between him and his father culminated in a stint of involuntary commitment. On release in 1964, he left for Australia as a ‘10 Pound Pom’.

For the next ten years, he roamed Australia – working in its cities, rural towns, and outback. But a rolling stone gathers no moss. Christopher, the adventurer, insidiously became a hard-working, hard-drinking and hard-playing drifter on a downward spiral. In 1973, on a remote aboriginal settlement in the Northern Territory, new things impacted him and became the impetus for him to think he may have a future – if he survived. 

True stories provide insight into the tortuous journey of a lonely, insecure child and young man in England; a unique view through the eyes of an immigrant drifter in Australia; and the rollercoaster ride of reintegrating himself into mainstream society.

Christopher, from England, arrived in Australia at 21-year-old as a ‘10 Pound Pom’ in 1964. The effect of his torturous years growing up and at boarding school remain, as does his burden of dyslexia, but he compensated for the latter by recording his stories of his ‘Drifter’ days on his trusty reel-to-reel recorder. Some of his recordings and his stories were chosen to profile the ‘10 Pound Pom’ Victorian Immigration Museum exhibition in 2017. He has always had a love of electronics, film and TV and in the switch from Drifter to mainstream, successfully developed his own business in this area. He is now retired, avidly listens to talking books, but his wandering spirit, and love of media remains to this day.

Dianne, an Australian, is a descendant of pioneers who arrived in the 1800s by way of convict (Port Arthur), free settlers, and through the Earl Grey Scheme (Ireland) during the potato famine. Her Great Grandfather was one of the 13 tried for treason in the Eureka Stockade, Ballarat. Dianne grew up on a farm, in Victoria, completed her nurse training in Melbourne in 1972 and then nursed in Alice Springs before relocating to Yuendumu, Northern Territory in 1973. She worked in academia at Federation University for many years, and is now Executive Dean at Lawson College Australia that has a focus on international students.

Christopher and Dianne met at Yuendumu, Northern Territory, Australia in 1973 and married this same year. Together, they have three adult children, and seven grandchildren. All are their pride and joy.

Customer Reviews
2 reviews
2 reviews
  • Anonymous

    Amazing book! Great book!

  • Oscar

    Amazing book!

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