In my unhappiness, I again turned to my animals. People let me down, animals didn’t … I decided that you couldn’t trust people – they could be liars and bullies, and were frightening and unpredictable. With animals I felt comfortable and peaceful. Animals made me happy. Love, Sweat & Tears, Zelie Bullen with Freda Marnie Nicholls, (p12).

Love, Sweat and Tears

I worked with Zelie Bullen and her sister briefly to publicise the recent launch of this memoir – the story of an Aussie battler who now leads an extraordinary life in the movie industry as one of the top international animal trainers. Next month, Zelie will be my guest at a Stories on Stage event and I’m looking forward to meeting her properly – the launch was rather hectic with about 200 people spilling about in a circus tent!  Reading her memoir, I’ve been saddened to find that she experienced the loss of so many loved ones so early … I know she comes through it all, but it will be good to find out how. Expect the review soon, but in the meantime, here’s the blurb.

The inspirational true story of a remarkable young woman who overcame an unconventional childhood, personal tragedy and depression to work as a stunt woman and then as one of the most successful animal trainers in Australia, if not the world. Zelie’s love of animals and their affection for her has kept her going during even her darkest moments, and ultimately this led her to the man she loves and to the amazing life she now leads. Step inside Zelie’s extraordinary world where she has worked with everyone from Princess Zahra, the Aga Khan’s daughter, to Antonio Banderas, to the piglets in Babe and the war horse in Stephen Spielberg’s epic film, War Horse.

 Sound good? Is it the kind of book you’d pick up?


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!




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