This book fills a library need

 It is a great pleasure to host another review for Clancy. My local librarian complained to me that there are not enough books for boys. She said the libraries are always looking for a great adventure story that will appeal to the young male members. Well, she can’t go past this one. This is a wonderful coming of age story for boys.

SYNOPSIS: Fourteen-year-old Gunnedah ‘Gunnie’ Danson is despondent because he has an assignment on the drought. As a ‘Townie’ he knows nothing about the effects of this blight on the rural industry; but that is about to change. When he returns home from school he receives a surprise gift. His late grandfather has left him a box containing a manuscript. It was written by Gunnie’s great-great-grandfather, Smokey ‘Gun’ Danson after his journey up the long paddock as a fourteen-year-old drover; during a harsh drought in 1910. At the back of the manuscript is an envelope. It’s NOT to be opened until Gunnie has read the entire story.

Gunnie spends the weekend at Wiralee Station – a cattle station that’s been in the family since 1848. There, he reads the awesome manuscript and learns of Smokey’s adventurous journey. But while he is at Wiralee, he learns more than he expected – Wiralee is again under threat but for a different reason. Will the contents of the mysterious envelope save it?


The story is set in the Australian bush and parallels the lives of two boys – Gunnie, a present day lad of 14, and his great-great-grandfather, Smokey, at the same age. The story is based around a manuscript left to the present day lad that tells the story of his great-great-grandfather’s heroic journey to save the family’s cattle property during the 1910 drought. To do this he must take the property’s cattle on a trek up the long paddock. (For townies, that is the road verge – in times of drought cattlemen took their cattle on a long trek up the main road looking for places to feed them).

 The property that Smokey saved is still in the family, and Gunnie goes there to read the manuscript. During the stay, he learns that the property is again under threat, but this time from a different source. Gunnie finds an envelope in the back of the manuscript that is not to be opened until after he has read the story. This envelope holds the key to save the property from this new threat.

 Some of the adversity Smokey faces would be daunting for adults, but with guts and determination, he picks himself up, dusts himself off, and continues with his allotted task. The life lessons that his example sets for the young readers will stick with them and, hopefully, help them to deal with their own setbacks. It is cleverly written and is a heart warming and enjoyable read that will appeal to more than the child and young adult audience it is targeting. I became totally lost in the bush setting and the lives of the two main protagonists and felt like I was there with them. It has been favourably acclaimed by many notable people.

Here is just one of the comments made:

‘I loved the story. I found the plot believable and the characters authentic. The structure of parallel narrators works well, particularly because both boys are a similar age and have the same standards or principles. You have the very successful formula of the kids showing just how capable they are in the absence of adults, plus a few “baddies” to test or push them a little further.’ – Geri Coughlan – head librarian Trinity College.

 You and your children will love this book. Enter the competition to win a free eBook or take advantage of the blog tour special buy on the paperback.

Where can we buy the book?

It’s available as an author signed paperback from and

Paperback Price Slashed: From 14th to 31st January, the price of the Gunnedah Hero paperback will be slashed to $25. Go to the website and choose the Buy Now button under Discount copy text. The usual postage charge will apply.  Or order it from

 eBook available for immediate download from Smashwords:

Google eBooks:

And Apple iBooks, Barnes and Nobel, Sony, Kobo.

 GIVE-AWAY: As a part of this blog tour, Morris Publishing Australia and Clancy Tucker are giving three eBooks to readers of the blogs. Go to and use the form on the Contact Page. Fill in your first name, email address, and put Blog Competition and your preferred eBook format in the message. You and your children will love this heart-warming story. (Choose from ePub, PDF, Kindle) The winners will be drawn on January 31st, 2012. All winners will be notified by email and their eBook will be attached.

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