Australian author Lana Penrose contacted me recently describing her book ‘To Hellas and Back‘ (originally published by Penguin Australia) as being all about her experience as a trailing spouse in Greece (only she wasn’t aware of the term at the time). Have a read and let us all know what you think. — Jeff
You know how being a trailing spouse can sometimes suck? Okay, probably not the best choice of words, but few talk about the realities of becoming a man-bag in a foreign country like it’s a dirty, dark secret.
As a trailing spouse, I grew tired of reading about utopian fantasies being enjoyed by others in various countries. Rather than successfully converting a crumbling monstrosity into a charming abode in which I flounced, or finding enlightenment and inner-peace in my newly adopted country of Greece, I came closer to experiencing a nervous breakdown, which is why I penned ‘To Hellas and Back’, originally published by Penguin/Viking. It went on to become a bestseller.
Why? Well, I think it’s because I dared speak the truth, and I served my very personal story up with lashings of humour. But I was surprised to learn post-release that many people endure similar fates to mine.
So if you’re finding it hard to adapt in a foreign country, you’re not alone. And if you want a good laugh (or cry) at the expense of a hypersensitive whack job battling with culture shock, this book’s for you. Nobody ‘gets’ it more than a trailing spouse!
‘You’ll laugh ‘til you cry’ – Cleo
Lana Penrose is a bestselling author twice published by Penguin/Viking. She is a former record company promotions manager, music journalist and television producer, and worked briefly with Simon Cowell amongst others of the pop elite.
Memoir ‘To Hellas & Back’ has been described as ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ face-plowing into a plate of steaming moussaka and has been optioned for film adaptation.
‘Kickstart My Heart’ chronicles separation and divorce en route to new love and is something like Bridget Jones staggering through life with an axe through her head.
Visit: www.lanapenrose.com.au for more information.
About the Author
Lana Penrose, hails from what she describes as “a mysterious parallel universe known as Sydney, Australia”. Although her parents urged her to become a plastic surgeon specializing in rhinoplasty, various incarnations have included music journalist, record company promotions gal, music television producer and personal assistant to an iconic pop sensation whose name she says will never be revealed unless subjected to Chinese water torture. She also worked with the now-infamous Simon Cowell.
Sometime in the mid-nineties Lana accepted a position with MTV Australia and began interviewing the illustrious and not-so-illustrious of the rock and pop world. She left that behind to move to Athens in 2000 because that’s when she says she started going mad. Her thoughts, feelings and experiences ultimately evolved into the highly acclaimed bestseller ‘To Hellas and Back’, a memoir originally released through Penguin/Viking that reached number 2 on the Bookscan Bestsellers Top 10, pipped to the post by Michael Palin (to whom she bears no grudge because he’s a very nice man).
Her second book – ‘Kickstart My Heart’ – details her perilous journey as a suddenly single, disorientated, loveless train wreck of a human being on a desperate quest for love. The book has been described as ‘hilarious’ yet ‘sad’ (in every sense of the word), and falls somewhere between ‘Bridget Jones’ and ‘Sex & the City’ with a Les Paul wedged beneath an armpit. ‘Kickstart My Heart’ also had a soundtrack released through Universal Music, bypassing the hassle of producing a movie. Who needs the bother, right?
Her third book ‘Addicted to Love’ closes the non-fiction trilogy. Lana says “trust me when I say it’s gonna mess with your head. It did mine”. Lan’s books are very well acclaimed.