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Apple Island Wife: Slow Living In Tasmania

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  158 ratings  ·  47 reviews

What happens when you leave city life and move to five acres on a hunch, with a husband who’s an aspiring alpaca-whisperer, and a feral cockerel for company? Can you eat the cockerel for dinner? Or has it got rigour mortise?
In search of a good life and a slower pace, Fiona Stocker upped-sticks and moved to Tasmania, a land of promise, wilderness, and family homes of uncert

Kindle Edition
Published September 20th 2018 by Unbound Digital
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Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
‘This book is about the search for the good life. My husband and I found it, we believe in Tasmania.’

Fiona Stocker – Apple Island Wife

Apple Island Wife Slow Living in Tasmania, is a humorous and insightful memoir that details the adventures of a family who make the sea change from Britain to Tasmania. Told with honesty and a personal blend of wit, Apple Island Wife will be sure to convince readers to take a visit to the beautiful ‘Apple Isle’.

The hustle and
I read this book through The Pigeonhole, a free online book club and read it with other readers on the web. It was split into 10 parts, called staves, that I read through the nifty Pigeonhole app. I was able to leave comments throughout and interact with the other readers and the author, which really did add to my reading experience.

This was such a lovely book, I feel like I’ve spent the last ten days in Tasmania with the author, her family and menagerie. The descriptions of the area and the loc
"I came to know these sights, the expanses of the sky, each majestic roadside gum tree, the dip in the landscape where rocks broke through the earth. They were like old friends, always familiar, and always changing... Such is way the place we live ingrains itself in us and becomes our home."
Although Fiona Stocker traces the her personal journey from that of a city dweller to a country woman, Apple Island Wife is a celebration of Tasmania itself. The land, the people, the mountains and the val
Enjoyable read about life in rural Tasmania.

Fiona and her husband Oliver lived in London but moved to Brisbane Australia. They had a good life there. Soon a child joined the family. However, they were looking for something different, the "good life". They bought a small farm (5 acres) in rural northern Tasmania (an island but another state of Australia). Life in Tassie, as it´s called locally, is different. Shortly after moving to Tassie, Fiona has another child. They also have chickens and alpa
Di Paterson
Nov 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An absolutely delightful look at a family's move into a slower lifestyle. I'm in awe of Fiona and her husband, Oliver, and I think his determination and solid know-how combined with Fiona's positive can-do attitude is the reason for their success.

Fiona's humorous viewpoint makes life's problems bearable, and has ultimately entertained many others. Her writing style is easy and honest, and brings to life mundane situations and changes them into meaningful episodes in her life. Her description of
Suzy Dominey
Jun 13, 2019 rated it liked it
A book to dip into . Can't wait for my Tasmanian life to begin ...more
I dove into the pages of Apple Island Wife this weekend, hoping the memoirs of a woman making a new home for her family in rural Tanzania would distract me from our frigid Canadian winter. (It was adorable how she described how some individuals might consider Tanzania cold.)

This charming tale was a delightful telling of growth and discovery, stories of everyday life in a new setting, interspersed with droll humour. The account was amusing and educational (being from the North American corner of
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a charming read reminiscent of Toujours Provence, A Beer in the Loire and Under the Tuscan Sun, with one profound difference. The destination is not well known, nor in Europe. It is Tasmania (via a brief spell in Brisbane, Australia). Fiona Stocker, a former office administration worker with a talent for writing, chronicles the life she, her cabinet maker husband Paul and their charming children Daisy (born in Australia) and Kit (born in Tasmania) lead when they decide to leave England.
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. It’s gentle humour, real life and fascinating characters and intriguing story of a family finding its way in a whole new setting, lifestyle and country. Fiona and her family have embraced rural country life down in Tasmania and are actually living the dream. I previously knew absolutely nothing about Tasmania so I found this a very interesting insight into what is obviously a very beautiful and interesting Country. I could totally relate to so many things throughout ...more
Gail Wylde
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: pigeonhole
This was a very enjoyable read about life in rural Tasmania for an expat family who started their down under life in Queensland. This book was full of wonderful people, stunning countryside and great humour. Tasmania has now been elevated in my list of places to visit.
I want to thank the author Fiona and Pigeonhole for allowing us to read this book and I highly recommend it.
Dyane Harwood
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved reading Fiona Stocker's memoir "Apple Island Wife." Tasmania is a mysterious-sounding island that not many people know about and Stocker brings it to life in her vivid account. This is an enjoyable, slice-of-life read that offers readers a glimpse into what it's like to live with alpacas and other colorful creatures, i.e. a scorpion. ...more
Jun 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
A new life in Tasmania. An enjoyable easy read. Fiona and Oliver are likeable and crave a new life and with a new life brings new skills. Perfect escapism.
Sep 14, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to find something worthwhile in this book. It's about an island I love and a community that raised me. Fiona Stocker did none of it justice, if anything she has painted a picture of life in Tasmania so infuriatingly inaccurate I was prompted to write the following review.

From the beginning the descriptions of Tasmanians (particularly appearance, vernacular and general ape like descriptions of their persona) was downright offensive and at times bordered on sounding like a David Attenboro
Rebecca If Only I Could Read Faster
I don’t tend to read memoirs but Apple Island Wife by Fiona Stocker sounded interesting and like a book that I wanted to read. I think that in part it is because I related to the blurb, I have previously moved to New Zealand from England, although back in England now I am contemplating a return.

Fiona’s writing is funny, she has a way with words that had me chuckling away. It reminded me of when I found myself living on ten acres without a clue of what I should be doing. This was proven only a fe
Cheryl M-M
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The author has a knack for telling a yarn, no pun intended. There are some people, I think we will all know at least one person this applies to, who can make even the most mundane of tasks become an entertaining story. This is what Stocker does with the stories of her family and her anecdotes. In fact she is probably a written advertisement for upping roots and moving to New Zealand.

It’s amusing, albeit probably unintentionally so. In a way the author downplays the difficulty of adjusting to suc
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
I felt so honoured to be given an insight into the life of Fiona Stoker, husband Oliver, and their adorable children. Fiona’s memoir is an amusing account of how they moved to Tasmania and adapted to a new country, new climate and a totally new way of life.

The anecdotes are both informative and funny, Fiona has a way of making the most mundane tasks seem really amusing. However, by contrast, she describes the most outrageous occurrences as if they happen on a daily basis!

The Stoker’s new life me
Andy Hewitt
Aug 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Chuckles all the way.
As Fiona herself admits, an art degree from Warwick University didn’t really equip her for life in rural Tasmania. Fiona is a very talented writer and a master at understatement. Here is just one of the many passages that made me chuckle: “No, darling. Lorna is having a baby and I need to help her. Not only did I have to attend to an alpaca birth, but I now had to explain events in terms a one-year old could understand. It was all a bit much for a morning when I’d expected t
michelle bantoft
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it

I liked this, some genuinely funny moments and overall a thoroughly enjoyable read. Will definitely read the sequel when it comes out.
Valerie Poore
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a delightful memoir this was for me. The author, Fiona Stocker, and her husband Oliver move to a smallholding in Tasmania to escape the heat and stress of city life in Brisbane and so begins a complete change of life for them.

I will confess that I've wanted to go to Tasmania for about thirty years, ever since I met some people from Hobart in the course of my work in South Africa. From their stories, I became fascinated by the island and read a number of books about its history. As a result,
Lisa Wright
Dec 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A great look at life in Tasmania. When we visited Australia last year, I was sad to have missed out on visiting Tasmania. Even more so after reading Fiona Stocker’s Apple Island Wife.
Fed up with the dirt and crowds in London, Fiona and Oliver move to Australia to find somewhere more fresh. Although they never intended to live in a city again, they ended up living and working in Brisbane, by mistake…for seven years. Eventually Fiona persuades Oliver to look at Tasmania - A quieter greener island
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley

In search of a different way of life, Fiona Stocker and husband Oliver upped sticks and moved themselves and their young family to rural Tasmania, to a house of dubious construction among five acres of land. It was the start of a number of adventures Fiona probably wouldn’t have predicted, including acting as midwife to a permanently disgruntled alpaca named Lorna (to be honest, I would happily have read a whole book about the alpacas alone. Alpaca Island Wife?) Along with alpaca-, chicken- and
Jo | Booklover Book Reviews
Sep 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
It is quite rare for me to read memoirs, but I am so glad I took a chance on this delightful book from Fiona Stocker. Do not for one-minute be put off by ‘Wife’ being in the title. Spoiler alert: They have alpacas, but Fiona has no intention of learning to knit – enough said.

The observations and life moments Stocker candidly shares in Apple Island Wife are ones we can all engage with on some level. Despite living in suburbia, we had a septic tank in our backyard when I was very young – did y
Feb 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Memoirs can be a tricky thing, after all the writer is putting their life out there for others to read about and hoping that someone is interested enough to pick it up in the first place. I can honestly say this is one of those times you should take the chance and grab a copy of Apple Island Wife as you won’t be disappointed.
Fiona Stocker gives an honest and funny insight into life in Tasmania after she and her husband, along with their daughter Daisy decide to up sticks and move there. From th
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
The stories that Fiona shares are so human, and her ability to reflect and laugh about some of the more absurd moments make this entire book read like you are relaxing with a glass of wine and chatting with a bestie. I thought I knew a thing or two about Tasmania, and found myself learning so much more, and subsequently, falling in love with this place I have yet to visit. Fiona makes her community a character in the story, and I feel like I could show up tomorrow and feel right at home, which i ...more
Sue Paxton-Browne
Nov 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have thoroughly enjoyed this amusing yet thoughtful account of one English couple’s new life in Tasmania. It brought to life for me the island to which my Uncle and his family emigrated about fifty years ago. I now feel I know a lot more about what my relatives’ lives there must have been like. It was an easy, engaging read.
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read this delightful book with Pigeonhole. It tells the story of a family moving to Tasmania to have a better life. It is full of their adventures and told in a very heartwarming way. I felt part of their family and their adventure. Wonderful descriptions of farm life and animals. Look forward to hearing more about them
Nov 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads
Really charming memoir by a British ex-pat who emigrated first to Australia then settled with her family in Tasmania. The writing is eloquent and frequently funny and makes this a very easy, entertaining read.

Read via the Pigeonhole app. Many thanks to Pigeon and Fiona Stocker for sharing this with us.
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this story of living (slowly) in Tasmania's north, west of the Tamar Estuary. Easy to read, enjoyable, with a couple of typos that should not have got through. (Farming lamas, anyone? Tibetan monks?) On the whole though, I really enjoyed the antics of Oliver, Fiona, Daisy and Kit and the dog Midget and all the friends they made. ...more
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
This isn’t usually the type of book I would usually pick up, but I truly enjoyed the real life view into a whole different world. How the author had a steep learning curve and tackled the challenges along the way. Felt a bit like a collection of blog posts at times but otherwise I thoroughly enjoyed it.
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
We chose this book for our bookclub as it was a fun autobiography by a fellow mum, from one of the best places in Australia - Tasmania! As an avid traveller of this country, I really enjoyed reading about daily life and challenges of living "outside the box" yet within a close knit community. Thank you for sharing Fiona, and for the laughs from your funny family anecdotes. ...more
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Author, indoor type farmer, cat whisperer, owner of a tiny farm in the West Tamar Valley of Tasmania. Writer and reader of wives tales as they're often ignored. ...more

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