Blow the Wind Southerly

By Vincent Smith


THIS is a sweeping story of tremendous greed and cruelty and tremendous love. The author, Vincent Smith, takes us from the impoverished Midlands of England in the early 1900s, to war-torn Europe and the Pacific in a story that keeps the reader engrossed in the many twists and turns.

At the heart of the story is a heartless, driven and cruel woman, Nellie Byrnes, whose blind ambition to achieve wealth and prestige for herself and her son, Thomas, has an enormous and devastating impact on all those around her.

Her wicked plots see her husband, Michael, hospitalised in a sanatorium, her step-daughter, Janie, kidnapped and transported to Australia, and Janie’s boyfriend, Harry, sent to war (or face false attempted murder charges).

There are many other players in this cleverly-crafted story. Janie and Harry are separated for years, and each time it seems like they may be getting closer, the long talons of Nellie Byrnes slash all chances.

Each chapter unveils more deceit and treachery, but there are silver linings in these clouds – and some unforgettable characters. Vincent Smith has written a masterful novel, one that would appeal to a wide variety of readers. The book covers so much geographic and emotional terrain – it’s a credit to the author and a damn good read.


Wendy O’Hanlon

–       Acres Australia