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Chapters Book Club

It can be a bit daunting, as a writer, to think that there are groups of people sitting around in someone’s living room picking your book apart in a book club.  So it was with a mixed sense of excitement and trepidation that I accepted a kind offer by P&O Cruises to speak at the first-ever meeting of Chapters Book Club, on board Pacific Dawn.

I was probably the only person on the ship who was thankful that the weather for our second sea day on our cruise to Tahiti was cold and wet, as this was the day the cruise director chose to kick off the book club.

To my great relief about 60 passengers showed up and listened to me talk about my five novels, Far Horizon, Zambezi, African Sky, Safari, and my latest book, Silent Predator.  Silent Predator was the book nominated for discussion during the ship-board book club during this cruise.

I love meeting and talking to people who are as into books as I am, and a few of the passengers who came along have also tried their hand at writing or have a project on the go.

Tony Park with Chapters Book Club fan, Fay.

Tony Park with Chapters Book Club fan, Fay.

To me, the greatest impediments to writing a book are time and place – that is, having enough time and the right place to allow you to take on the task of getting about 120,000 words down on paper.   All my books are set in Africa and what works for me is to spend six months of each year in the African bush, where I do my research and writing on-location, and draw on the natural beauty of the continent for my inspiration.

I was thrilled to learn, when chatting to people from the audience, that one of the ladies who came along was actually finishing off a draft of a novel on the cruise, tapping away on her laptop in her cabin.  Like I always tell people, if you’re not writing because you enjoy it – in this woman’s case it was part of her holiday – then you’re probably doing it for the wrong reasons.

Have you ever thought of writing a book?  If you have, I reckon a long cruise is a perfect place to write – loads of time and no shortage of peace, quiet, and inspiration all at the same time.

Tony Park
Guest author for Chapters Book Club


Anzac DawnWelcome to the Blog and my chance to keep you up to date with events taking place on board Pacific Dawn.

Most recently saw us commemorating ANZAC Day and, as in previous years, we held our own Dawn Memorial Service on board. This was attended by Captain Lorenzo Paoletti, his Senior Officers and Crew as well as Servicemen, Ex Servicemen and fellow passengers, to honour members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I and all those who died and served in military operations for the country.
Anzac ServiceThe service was conducted by Reverend Dr. Russ McKinnon and began with the Australian and New Zealand National Anthems, beautifully sung by Entertainment Staff, Bobbi Walters (New Zealand), Bret Saunders (New Zealand) and Kyle (Australian), who is part of our Pacific Cirque duo. Following this, various ANZAC Day readings and prayers were read by both staff and passengers. As the sun began to rise over the Pacific Ocean, Kyle played the traditional Last Post and the wreath placed over the side of the ship by the Captain and Ex Servicemen.
Wreath at seaAs always, it is an emotional event but also a chance for people from all walks of life, ages and backgrounds to unite and remember those who so bravely fought for our freedom. From a personal point of view, being an Ex Serviceman myself, it was an honour for me to march with the Ex Servicemen and Servicemen on board at the start of the ceremony as well as representing part of the ship’s company, all of whom put so much thought and effort into the service to make it a sensitive, successful occasion. I know it was much appreciated by all the passengers and servicemen who attended. Lest we forget …

Cruise Director
David Pepper

comedy-clubG’day folks this is Dave with the latest entertainment news on the Pacific Dawn.  

I really have been very impressed during my first voyage onboard this beautiful vessel. Yes, of course the crew are amazing and so dedicated and professional but what really make this ship special are the events and activities unique to P&O Australia, for instance “the Sit Down Comedy Club” which is held in our Dome on Deck 14, the perfect late night venue.

Other really good initiatives include our Pacific Cirque Program which brings the Circus to Sea with such things as juggling, hoola hoop, spinning plates, devil stick workshops and stage shows.

pacific-cirqueThen we have our Laser Show in the Atrium which combines music with dance and a spectacular light and sound display. Hip Hop Dancing classes are extremely popular too!  The variety of entertainment onboard Pacific Dawn certainly suits the needs of all our guests.
laser-showBut the Biggest impression made on me has been by our passengers, the majority being Australians who really do have a zest for living!
This is what makes me very proud to be the Cruise Director onboard the Pacific Dawn!


Here, the Pacific Dawn crew will share what life is really like onboard.

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