Intolerance, hate and religion

‘The more things change, the more they are the same.’ Alphonse Karr []

The quote above is apt, even now with the impact of COVID-19 around the world. Change is inevitable, yet in spite of technical advances, progress in medicine, education, engineering etc, one cannot change how people behave or interact with others. The most significant cultural factor is religion, and that of politics, two topics that arouses heated discussions no matter where you live. It is the former that led to Hypatia’s unfortunate demise.

Painting of Hypatia of Alexandria by Julius Kronberg (1889). Image: Public Domain.

Meeting of the Intellects

Alexandria, since its founding by Alexander the Great in circa 331 BCE, was the centre of learning, attracting intellects, artists, scientists and many other disciplines from around the Mediterranean and beyond. It was a unique and beautiful city, and built on pagan religion. Many of the famous buildings that have echoed through time were commissioned by Ptolemy I, who was Alexander’s general and a Macedonian who adopted the Egyptian way of life, including marrying within the family. Unfortunately, this dynastic family died when Cleopatra committed suicide in 30 BCE.


The importance of education for all

Theon, Hypatia’s father, could be considered a futurist in educating his daughter in Mathematics and Philosophy and encouraging her interest in astronomy. His attitude may have been different if he had a son, who knows, however Hypatia was fortunate to have been educated. This was during a time when women were relegated to the back rooms of the house, wore veils if they ventured out of the home, and usually accompanied by a male relative or a slave. This control over women stemmed for a thousand years in Ancient Greece and across the Mediterranean world.

Miss Julia Neilson as “Hypatia,” c. 1890. The British Museum, Prints and Drawings. Source:

Book Review

Orders from Berlin by Simon Tolkein

The year is 1940 and the war in Europe is escalating, Germany has annexed France and Hitler is now focussing his attention on Britain and its leader, Winston Churchill. By removing the Prime Minister, Hitler believes Germany will win the war.

Head of the Gestapo and the Sicherheitsdienst (SD), the intelligence unit of the SS, develops a plan to thwart the allies, and his target is Great Britain and her stalwart Prime Minister.

Doomed for being a woman

Many of you who have been following my blog will know of my first book Accursed Women, is about the plight of women in the ancient world. Even though the characters in the stories are fictional and based on mythical beings, the issues they faced and the lives they led were a reflection of the times. The stories were told by men who had a sexist view and lamented on the sexuality of women. Hesiod did not think highly of women as expressed in his Theogony and Works and Days.

The “Pseudo-Seneca,” a bronze portrait head identified for a very long time as the Roman philosopher Seneca the Younger, but now believed to most likely be a fictional representation of Hesiod By Marie-Lan Nguyen (2011), CC BY 2.5,

A new book in the pipeline

First, I want to allay readers of the Servant of the Gods series that Book 3 will be finished by the end of the year (fingers crossed and everything else crossed as well!) More on that in future posts, but I wanted to tell you about a new historical novel I am researching. The idea for the story came to me after watching a movie. The film stayed with me for years following its release at the cinema and about 18 months ago I road-tested the story concept.


Book Review

The Emerald Tablet by Meaghan Wilson Anastasios

What do Indiana Jones and Benedict Hitchens have in common? They are archaeologists who seem to get into a lot of trouble and caught up in the wrong crowd. This is the second book by Meaghan Wilson Anastasios with the character Benedict Hitchens, and I don’t think it will be the last. The Emerald Tablet is a contemporary Historical fiction novel with adventure and political mayhem added to the mix.

The Year 2020


It’s hard to believe we’re starting a new year. I am still scratching my head as to what happened to the year that was 2019. It had gone so fast and when I look back, a lot of my energy went into my position as Year Coordinator at the school I work. I’ve never been in this role before and the learning curve was steep!

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Some days were challenging, like most teaching is, and many rewarding days. I will be in the role again for this coming year. It’s going to be an interesting year.

Looking back at 2019, I didn’t get a lot of writing done, just over 14,000 words. Way below my target of 40,000 and completing book 3 in the Servant of the Gods series. I had a number of goals for 2019 and unfortunately didn’t finish one. My day job was all consuming and I had nothing left to give at the end of the day.

For 2020, I have decided it is time for a change. More focus will be on my writing, the writing community, socialising with family and friends, exercising and enjoying life. I can’t say 2019 was at all memorable, fun or healthy for my wellbeing. We did sell our home in a period of time when the market was low, so that is a plus, though we are still renting, and that’s okay. The suburb we’re in is nice and we’re not too far from Fremantle or the CBD.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

I am going to keep my goals short and achievable. It’s time I get smarter with my time and enjoy life. How was your 2019? Did you achieve your goals or did other factors Gatecrash their way and take over?

Thank you for your continued support and as always, I look forward to your comments and will respond.

Historical fiction novelist and a secondary teacher, Luciana Cavallaro, burnt out but not done… yet.

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Perth from above

To continue the theme of photos, I have created a short video on my home city of Perth, and considered as the most remote city in the world.

A little history of Perth, founded in 1829 as a penal colony, by Captain James Stirling. (My primary school teacher would be proud I remembered) Many of the colonists settled in Fremantle and along the Swan River, which you’ll see in the video and divides the southern and northern part of Perth. I often joke you need a passport to cross over the Narrows Bridge that connects the city. I have written about Perth in a previous post, click here to read.

I took these photos while in a small air-plane. It was quite the experience, very different to going on the larger airlines. The noise is deafening. I never realised how loud it was with the engines right next to you! It was great fun and highly recommend if you haven’t flown in small plane. The digital camera I used was a Fuji, nothing like the one I used for the Kalbarri photos, but they turned out okay. FYI, I took these photos about 10 years ago and Perth CBD and outlying areas has grown since.

You will also the see a few photos of blue water, which is the Indian Ocean and in one photo you may spot Rottnest Island where you will find the quokka.

I hope you enjoy the video.

Thank you for your continued support and as always, I look forward to your comments and will respond.

Historical fiction novelist and a secondary teacher, Luciana Cavallaro, burnt out but not done… yet.

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Some of my favourite photos

I love taking photos, I just don’t make time to go out with my camera. What I enjoy most is taking photos of landscapes; there are so many fascinating features to flowers, trees, the ocean, the forest, the geography of the land. I particular like to take photos of waves crashing against the cliffs or unique formations of the earth. When I was in Europe, I took lots of photos of the ancient ruins, and as most of you who have been following my blog, would know that ancient history is a passion of mine.

I am going to share with you some of my photos from my trip and from around my home in Western Australia over the next series of articles.

Sit back and enjoy.

Thank you for your continued support and as always, I look forward to your comments and will respond.

Historical fiction novelist and a secondary teacher, Luciana Cavallaro, burnt out but not done… yet.

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