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Unpacking for Greece: Travel in a land of fortresses, fables, ferries and feta by Sally Jane Smith

May 23, 2023

I met Sally Jane Smith, the author of Unpacking for Greece, some time ago through a Facebook memoir author’s group we both belong to. I knew she was originally from South Africa, that she now lives in Australia, and that she was writing her own memoir although not about either of those countries, which intrigued me. So last year when she was seeking beta readers for her manuscript among the members of the group, I jumped at the chance. By this time, I also knew Sally to be a perfectionist who was eager to receive feedback about her writing, and I enjoyed all the discussion her memoir generated between us.

I am therefore delighted to report that Sally’s book, Unpacking for Greece: Travel in a land of fortresses, fables, ferries and feta is now due for release on June the 1st. This is an inspiring account of a trip to Greece taken to rediscover her love of travel. Formerly an inveterate solo world wanderer, her confidence was literally shattered by an appalling accident on a bus in Sri Lanka and it was years before she collected up her bags and her courage to embark on this journey through Greece, a land steeped in history and packed with heritage sites she’d long wanted to explore.

This book is about more than just a physical journey, however. It is also a personal road to healing as well as a reconnection with her mother’s past. Sally’s reading matter is another important theme in the book as she enjoys pairing books to places, and her pleasure at seeing what she was reading was palpable.

Unpacking for Greece is, for me, a keeper. I loved the layers, the quiet humour, the thoughtful reflections and the sheer beauty of Sally’s lyrical writing. I learnt about the loveliness of Santorini, Rhodes and Monemvasia. I visited chapels, temples and archaeological sites I have never seen but feel I have, and I will read it again, more than once. It is a deeply personal memoir; Sally Smith does not shy away from examining her own ethics, attitudes and insecurities, and I found it profoundly moving as a result. Do I recommend it? Absolutely, and without reserve!

Available for pre-order now, you can find Unpacking for Greece on all Amazon marketplaces. This is the link to the Amazon US site, but if you replace the ‘com’ with your own country’s extension, you’ll find it there. Order it, buy it! It’s a very special book.

My very own copy. I’m so pleased to have it!

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