An Invitation To All of You!

Whitewashed Jacarandas


Whitewashed Jacarandas

Ready to Read!


An Invitation To All of You!

The writing is done, my first novel is ready to be read!

You’re invited to be one of the first people in the world to read Whitewashed Jacarandas.

An Invitation To All of  You!

I’ve decided to start an Author Inner Circle. What is it? It’s a small group of engaged readers who can commit to helping me sharpen the book before I send it to the editor.

Following the read  I’ll need  your opinion on it  by July 15.  In return you’ll get an exclusive invitation to the book launch party this fall, and a free, signed copy of the book on it’s release.  All you have to do is reply on Comments below to be considered for entry into the Author Inner Circle and share with me  your favorite book of all time as well as what you are currently reading.

I’ll be selecting just a few readers from this list on Friday, June 13, 2014, lucky for some!

After you read the 400-page book (sent as a PDF) I’ll need you to fill out a short survey and agree to conducting a half-hour phone or Skype chat to discuss what you liked and what you didn’t. I really want to know what you think!  All I’m looking for  is your opinion. It’s important to me.

There’s also a bonus! I will credit all my Inner Circle members in the acknowledgements of Whitewashed Jacarandas.

So, respond on Comments to be considered.

Thanks to all of you for your ongoing support!


  • Gay Roberts

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Hello Diana
    Would love to read your book. Grew up in Kwe Kwe and have often browsed through your stories. My great grandfather was John Austen. My maiden name Jenkinson.
    Congratulations and hope to hear from you
    Regards Gay Roberts

  • ron rees

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Favourite book of all time: the bible
    Currently reading; “William the conqueror” by David C Douglas.

  • Robin Clay

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Of all the books I read as a child, one book that still stands out in my mind is “Brown on Resolution” C.S. Forester

    I have just finished “proof-reading” a fact-based semi-novel about piracy for a (Rhodesian) friend. It will be a very good book when published. Alas! after all my comments he has gone for a complete re-write !

  • Linda Ihle

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Favourite book of all time – really hard to say, but “When a Crocodile Eats the Sun” by Peter Godwin would be right at the top of that list. Presently, I am reading The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, about a young homosexual man who accidentally becomes secretary to Leon Trotsky and chef to Diego Rivera and wife Frida Kahlo in the midst of the Mexican Revolution, then embroiled in the J. Edgar Hoover/McCarthy communist paranoia and witch-hunts of the early 1950s. Brilliantly written and chilling in its comparability to the present-day GOP and Tea Party fanatics.

  • Chris Hallamore

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    The book that inspired me to spend a lifetime with wildlife is “Jock of the Bushveldt”

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading “Once called Home”. I was born in 1947 and grew up in a Rhodesian farming family , later I spent several years in East Africa and could relate to all the wonderful stories

    Lind regards


  • Zimbogirl

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Cannot wait to proof read Whitewashed Jacarandas !!!!

  • Ruth Mor

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    I very much enjoyed reading “Once called Home” and would like to read your book- just not the computer!!!-which means no proof reading for me! I’d love a copy when it comes out in print.

    • Diana

      Reply Reply June 18, 2014

      Ruth, I’m looking forward to it coming out myself in print! I’ll be posting the launch date here so stay tuned.

  • Ed Goldberg

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    The best book that I have read in a long time is Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. I have just finished At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson which was excellent and I’m about to start on Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer which I have heard very good things about.

  • Nigel Prior

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Diana….I would love to read your final draught and pass some constructive comment that may be of some use…I have been a member of a writing group and had a couple of short stories in our self published anthologies. I have also attended a few workshop /seminars on writing including critiquing and been a judge for teen short stories for the Sunshine Coast literary Soc.
    I am no expert but happy to help if possible

  • Tim Hughes

    Reply Reply June 9, 2014

    Diana, I can hardly wait to read your book, “Whitewashed Jacarandas.”
    My favourite book is “Rain on the Roof” by Joan Freyburg. (Did you guess?).
    I am currently reading “John Wayne, The Man behind the Myth” by Michael Munn.
    I am happy to read your 400 page book as a PDF and will agree to your conditions.

  • Bert May

    Reply Reply June 10, 2014

    Hello Diana, It would be my pleasure to read your book. I married a Que-Que girl and have fond memories of the town and surrounding areas.I truly appreciate all the books on the bush war in Rhodesia and can not single out the best one, they all so interesting. I`m currently reading the history of the war in Afghanistan
    My kindest regards, Bert.

  • Jane Maxim

    Reply Reply June 10, 2014

    Would love to read your book, as a thank you for that special tea in London. My mother
    would have been entranced to read it so this is for her. Have reasonable editorial skills and will do as I am told.
    Much love

  • John Roberts

    Reply Reply June 10, 2014

    I would love to help you with your book. You helped me make contacts for my own novel I’m working on which now contains a sizeable chunk set in Southern Rhodesia/Zimbabwe from 1947-1980. I’ve published one novel, How the Dice Fell, available on Amazon and completed a second which awaits a final edit. My favourite book? Very difficult but One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest probably. At the moment I’m reading The Monkey Wrench Gang and Mountains of the Mind.

    • Diana

      Reply Reply June 10, 2014

      John, Congratulations on the publication of your first book which is very timely. I am glad I was able to connect you to broaden the scope of your second book, the internet has made the world very small.
      Ken Kesey is of course #1 in Oregon. A good friend of mine owns the movie house just up river from me featured in the movie starring Paul Newman and Henry Fonda in Kesey’s book Sometimes a Great Notion.

  • Morag Marinoni

    Reply Reply June 10, 2014

    Dear Diana,

    Thank you for the invitation and thank you for your previous prompt response to my earlier query via email.

    I look forward to reading the proof if you choose me to be one of your readers; have never done such a thing before, but I have been known to critique the occasional book. I upset one author because I told the truth about my experience of his book – I thought it beautifully observed and very well written but I just could not love the main character. However, I do not regret buying it, and I told the author so, as he depicts very well a part of Tanganyika that I was unfamiliar with so I am very glad to add to my knowledge of Tanganyika’s colonial history. I don’t have a single book about Rhodesia yet, although I lived there, I have a sister still there, and two brothers who have both died but did live there. Your stories in OnceCalledHome fill me with that nostalgic ache that the Tanganyika books do. We were all very privileged to live in Africa during those times.

    With every good wish,
    Morag Marinoni

  • Jim Dryburgh

    Reply Reply June 12, 2014

    Hi Diana

    Let’s hope the power is not cut again while I’m in the middle of this.

    Best book of all time. Far too subjective for me to offer my humble opinion.
    But I enjoyed “The outline of history” by H.G.Wells until I came to the last part, which was written by someone else after his death, to bring the book up to date.

    Books read this year. “Quentins” “Tara Road” The whole of the history of the English-speaking peoples” “The Rommel papers” “The seven Pillars of Wisdom” “Safety Last”

    My soujourn in Que Que was from February 1952 till July 1956 when I joined the Native Department. But I often visited Que Que over the next forty years and was stationed there in 1973(?)

    Since 1978 I have lived in the Harare bubble A very strange place.

    I will get this off to you before the computer loses power again


  • John Sandford

    Reply Reply June 16, 2014

    Hi Diana, It is way behind time now, but you did ask some months ago, whether I wished to contribute anything from Bulawayo. I just wrote up ,”Who let the Dogs out”, pretty lighthearted, but of a factual situation in 1960, and still relevant today. Maybe too late for publication if I send it now ? Please advise. Best Regards, John.

    • Diana

      Reply Reply June 17, 2014

      John, Thanks so much for the offer. You are quite a prolific writer as I recall. We all have own own story to tell and I do encourage you to publish yours. For the moment the routine weekly blogs have been suspended as I go through the exciting process of publication with Whitewashed Jacaarandas but stay tuned here as developments unfold. I do appreciate your on going support.

  • Marlene Carcary

    Reply Reply June 23, 2014

    I would be happy to help. We went to Rhodesia when I was six years old. I was educated there. I married a Rhodesian born man and both my children were born there. My husband’s grandfather was a pioneer to Rhodesia and was given a farm from Rhodes. We both are avid readers of any books to do with Rhodesia.

    • Diana

      Reply Reply June 23, 2014

      Marlene, thanks so much for the offer. I have closed up the Inner Circle of early readers. But will keep you in the loop as the publication milestones are reached.

  • Neil

    Reply Reply February 13, 2016

    Well, of course we Hallamore descendants (see Chris message above), have proven pirate ancestry and a 1683 New York City trial to prove it!

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