Month: March 2022

A beautiful review

A beautiful review

So many thanks to Peter Donnelly for this beautiful review! 🙏🙏🙏

Book Launch: The Light in the Darkness: Musings on Living with Cancer by Jo St Leon
Smolt Kitchen, Hill St, West Hobart
1 November 2021

The Tasmanian community has known Jo St Leon for some 15 years as a distinguished viola player performing with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and previously as a member of the Elanee Ensemble and the Diemen Quartet. Jo has also taught at the Tasmanian Conservatorium of Music. Recently, she has been developing her skills as a writer. This book is the product of life reassessments Jo has made in the wake of recent serious illness.

A diagnosis of the rare blood cancer Sézary syndrome in 2016 altered Jo’s life forever. She used the period of her treatment and recovery to develop and refine her creative writing skills. It became a means of working through the life changes and priorities brought about from having cancer.

To her surprise, the initial essay – The Diagnosis – won a major literary prize and encouraged her to proceed with a collection of reflections on living with this condition. The occasion of the book’s launch was a happy and congenial one wittily introduced by fellow musician and violist Will Newbery. Friends, fellow musicians and cancer support folk were among the guests.

The book itself is designed to be an aid to anyone dealing with the life challenges occasioned by experiencing serious health issues. Jo’s writing is totally honest and engaging. Acknowledging her initial numbness, her fears and dark moments through to her courageous confrontation and acceptance of life’s new realities, Jo’s humour, inner strength and love of life permeate these pages. This is a wonderful read and should not be missed by anyone seeking insight into sorting out the important things in life!

Peter Donnelly