RIP Bryce Courtenay

As I lay in my bed early on Saturday morning and read the news on my phone, I shrieked with dismay as I discovered Bryce Courtenay had died the day before.

One of the most beloved storytellers of our era; an international treasure, a humble, former Ad man who made Australia his home, is gone.

His novels The Power of One, Tandia, The Potato Factory & Jessica, to name a few, are beautifully written stories of the human spirit, adversity, bonds between us and relationships that are intensely soul stirring and heartbreakingly beautiful; part prose, poetry and always with a gut wrenching honesty that has endeared his writing to his readers.

I remember fondly my year 8 school summer holidays when I first read The Power of One; my friend Janine and I spent a few weeks staying in her parents caravan on the beach in Diamond Head where we lay out sunbathing and taking turns to read aloud to each other. We would cry at the heartbreaking parts and cheer with Peekay’s success. We bought the VHS movie and the soundtrack and watched Bryce’s words come to life as we listened to the uplifting and often haunting voices of the African choirs that filled the soundtrack.

Bryce discovered he had terminal gastric cancer and instead of fighting it with surgeries, chemo and experimental surgeries, he accepted it with peace and dignity and chose to spend his last months at home with his wife.

He released this YouTube clip as a farewell to his readers everywhere. It’s simply beautiful and honest and humble, just like the man we’ll all miss.

Published by thisismelly

Mel @thisismelly lives a life of adventure, gets lost in farmer’s markets, regularly indulges in movies, loves to whip up gourmet meals in the kitchen, swears that one day she will learn to speak French properly, adores candles and fresh flowers, married her high school sweetheart, visited 19 countries and counting, fears an apocalyptic rage-virus, regularly spoils her cavoodle Harley, loves walking along the harbour, is decorated with ink, muddles her right & left, seasonally switches between blonde and brunette, has soul-mates, favours painted nails & dangly earrings, always orders the 'plateau de fromages', is obsessed with British or Scandinavian crime fiction, detests creepy-crawlies & people who take too long to order coffee, gives terrible directions, makes up crazy dances for her devilishly handsome husband, believes in good, would always be dressed in Saint Laurent, Gucci & Chloe if she could, adores Tex-Mex & Japanese, loves the smell of rain & evening jasmine, may be addicted to Instagram&Pinterest, is always on the hunt for a really good macchiato, is James Taylor’s biggest fan, gets rowdy with tequila, dreams every night, takes pickles, jalapeños & dried fruit for movie snacks, would hate a world without French champagne, adores Pantone 1765, almost always wishes she was lying on the sand in the sun, is an inconsistent Paleo convert and although she is a hopeless Francophile she will forever be smitten with Sydney.

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