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Synopsis

An earthy, entertaining collection of yarns about twenty larger-than-life outback characters. Meet Ron Canlin, who one day began sculpting the sandstone walls of his opal mine. Ten years later, every drive and tunnel in Ron's claim is full of wonderful sculptures - the eighth wonder of the world. Or Peter Venables, with his flowing white beard, puffing his pipe like a character from the pioneering 1800s, whose teams of Clydesdales plough, sow and harvest the crops they eat. Or Janie Marshall, contract musterer, ex-amateur jockey, known as 'F...kin' Jenny' after her favourite word, which she roars frequently-even in front of the parson! She's as outback as a road train full of emus, and you'll love reading her story. In Old-Timers, jillaroo, opal miner and bush humorist Sandy Thorne has assembled twenty vital snapshots of Australian life that inspire and enthral with their energy, originality and genuine pioneering spirit. Thorne treats us to tales from wharf labourers, coalminers, battling cockies, stockmen, spies, prisoners of war, pioneer fishermen, politicians, policemen, pilots and racing and rodeo horsemen. Sparkling with wisdom, wit, forthrightness and irreverent humour, these stories celebrate a courageous national character that squeezes every ounce out of life, through good times and bad.

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