Books About Opal

This is a collection of books about Australian opal, opal mining, cutting opal and making opal jewellery as well as true stories and fictional novels related to Australian opal.

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Australian Opal

The Birth of Opal: Natural and Synthetic

“The Birth of Opal” is the only book in the English speaking world that is devoted entirely to the topic of opal formation. It is a detailed investigative and enlightening account of the formation of opal both in nature and in the Lab.The investigation includes; the opal environment, Geography, Geology, Geochemistry, the decay cycle, soil reactions, the effect of salts and chemical reactions that result in “The Birth of Opal”. Outside of Russia, “The Birth of Opal” is the most complete book about opal genesis in the world. It is a world first in its class. It dispels the myths and mystery that has surrounded the formation of opal for centuries.All those who love gemstones, or geology and are fascinated by opal in particular or are curious about its true origins will finally find the answers in this book.It is a must have for Schools, Colleges, Universities, and Libraries everywhere.Get your copy now!

Opals

” Opals is one of eight gem books in a series written by Fred Ward and Charlotte Ward and photographed by Fred Ward and their son Christopher Ward. Charlotte Ward updated this edition. Each title, Rubies & Sapphires, Emeralds, Diamonds, Diamonds (in Russian), Pearls, Gem Care, Jade, and Phenomenal Gems, provides part of a continuing global exploration into the history, geology, lore, and sources of priceless jewels. Glamor, intrigue, romance, and the quest for treasure make these books valuable and fundamental to any gem library. They appeal to miners, jewelers, museums, and consumers alike. The Wards believe that the more people know, the better and safer they will buy. As long as humankind has roamed the world, they have placed extraordinary value on the incredible gifts from the land and sea. To support a love of gemstones with valid information, the Wards provide gorgeous illustrations and concise text gathered from experts around the world. The books read like tales of adventure, rich in detail on assessing the vital aspects of the finest of the fine and the rarest of the rare. “

Opals

” Opals is one of eight gem books in a series written by Fred Ward and Charlotte Ward and photographed by Fred Ward and their son Christopher Ward. Charlotte Ward updated this edition. Each title, Rubies & Sapphires, Emeralds, Diamonds, Diamonds (in Russian), Pearls, Gem Care, Jade, and Phenomenal Gems, provides part of a continuing global exploration into the history, geology, lore, and sources of priceless jewels. Glamor, intrigue, romance, and the quest for treasure make these books valuable and fundamental to any gem library. They appeal to miners, jewelers, museums, and consumers alike. The Wards believe that the more people know, the better and safer they will buy. As long as humankind has roamed the world, they have placed extraordinary value on the incredible gifts from the land and sea. To support a love of gemstones with valid information, the Wards provide gorgeous illustrations and concise text gathered from experts around the world. The books read like tales of adventure, rich in detail on assessing the vital aspects of the finest of the fine and the rarest of the rare. “

A History of South Australian Opal, 1840-2005 (A Journey with Colour, Volume 3)

Very rare collectors book

A History of Lightning Ridge Opal 1873-2003 (A Journey with Colour, Volume 2B)

Very rare collectors book

Opal Identification & Value

” The world standard is back by popular demand! This completely revised, updated and expanded version of Dr. Downing’s 1992 Opal Identification and Value is a “must have” for all appraisers, opal buyers and opal lovers. Learn to properly identify opals from all over the world. Many new locations have been added along with new methodology to determine the characteristics that affect value, then determine price from updated value tables. Ascertain if the opal is a natural solid, boulder, doublet, triplet, dyed or lab-created. Be able to ask definitive questions when considering an opal. Learn what to look for in properly set jewelry. Become a confident buyer, seller or appraiser by distinguishing an ordinary opal from an outstanding one. “

A History of White Cliffs Opal, 1889-1999 (A Journey with Colour, Volume 2A)

Very rare collectors book

Beautiful Opals Australia's National Gem

Black Opal Fossils of Lightning Ridge : Treasures from the Rainbow Billabong

A History of Queensland Opal, 1869-1979 (A Journey with Colour, Volume 1)

Very rare collectors book

The World of Opals

Centuries after it was first discovered, the opal remains the undisputed Queen of Gems. A stone of incredible beauty and variety, with a background rich in myth, adventure, and intrigue, it is considered by many to be the most desirable, the most handsome, and the most precious of all gemstones.

The first comprehensive book on the subject in over thirty years, The World of Opals is a complete guide to the science and history of these remarkable gems. It begins with a thorough examination of the physical properties and attributes of common and precious opals, with up-to-date information on opal formation, extraction, storage, and cutting. Next, it chronicles man’s involvement with the stone from 4000 B.C. to the present, following the opal through countless reversals of fortune and mythology as talisman, prognostic aid, patron stone of thieves, and bearer of bad luck.

Readers will find fascinating de-tails about the discovery, whereabouts, and value of famous opals, from such classic specimens as the Burning of Troy Opal to the Bonanza Opal and other more recent discoveries. Finally, the book surveys today’s major opal-producing areas and provides current information on opal occurrence worldwide.

Punctuating the text are useful tables, extensive glossaries of opal types and opal-related terms, and beautiful photographs that capture the essence and mystery of this most exquisite stone.

Accessible and authoritative, The World of Opals is a first-rate reference that will be consulted by mineral and gem enthusiasts for years to come.

The complete guide to the science and history of opals

The World of Opals contains thorough and accessible coverage of all aspects of the legendary Queen of Gems. It features the latest information on how opals are formed, where they are found, and how the stone is mined, and explores the fascinating history and mythology of opals throughout the ages. An indispensable addition to the library of every mineral and gem enthusiast, this definitive reference includes:

  • In-depth material on physical properties, attributes, and handling
  • A multifaceted examination of opal formation, opalized fossils and pseudomorphs, and opal types
  • Famous and distinctive opals, including weight, origin, date of discovery, and background
  • An up-to-date survey of major opal fields, plus an alphabetical guide to opal occurrence worldwide
  • Extensive glossaries of opal types and related terms, plus bibliography, tables, photographs, and more

Discover opals: Before & beyond 2000 with surface indications

Opal Adventures

” How and where opal is mined, its history and its lore. Grab your suitcase…we’re going to Australia. Pack your love of opals and your sense of adventure. Get ready to bump over dirt roads. Climb down long ladders. Find opal…not find opal. The complete story of opal. “

Australian Precious Opal: A Guide Book for Professionals

” Illustrated with many color photos! “

Opals : rivers of illusions

Opal South Australia's Gemstone

Andamooka opal

A Guide to Australian Precious Opal

The Opal Book: a Complete Guide to the Famous Gemstone

” Everyhing about opal. “

Australian Opals in Color

Opal Cutting, Carving and Setting

Opal & Gemstone Jewelry: Cutting*Designing*Setting

” Looking for OPAL CUTTING MADE EASY and ADVANCED CUTTING & SETTING? Look no further. Paul Downing has utilized his 40 years as a cutter, designer, teacher and author of these titles as well as OPAL ID & VALUE, to create a book every lapidary enthusiast will want to own. These titles are included in an updated, revised and expanded title. Not just for the beginner, even advanced cutters will want to learn the tips and tricks included. Easy to follow directions… accompanied by 306 color/ black & white photos and diagrams… take the reader through each gemstone… Agates (moss and lace), Chrysoprase, Lapis, Petrified Wood, Tigereye, and, of course, OPAL! Each stone is taken from its rough stage through the final polishing via step-by-step instructions. Once the stone is complete, the next task of creating a piece of jewelry is approached. Beyond simply buying a commercial setting or having a designer commissioned, an alternative is offered… creating your own lost wax design. Again each step is outlined with photos and diagrams. If you follow along, you will have a piece of jewelry to be proud of. The author is the recipient of numerous cutting awards, is a welcomed lecturer in the industry, and an inductee of the Rockhound and Lapidary Hall of Fame. All of his titles have received high praises for his easy to follow instructions and insights into the field of lapidary. “

Opal: Advanced Cutting & Setting

” The long-awaited sequel that goes beyond Opal Cutting Made Easy. Containing 33 color and 104 black & white photos and diagrams, Paul Downing has condensed his 30 plus years of experience in opal cutting and jewelry design into simple, easy to understand instructions. Learn all the skills he regularly offered in his popular opal cutting classes, plus many more subjects. Full of hints and ideas previously not available in print. “

Black Opal - A Comprehensive guide to cutting and orientating

” This is a well researched and beatifully presented guide to the fascinating craft of Opal Cutting/Polishing by a recognised leading Craftsman. Being an opal miner at Lightning Ridge for 28 years Greg is well placed to write about how opal is formed – its origins, the fields and the mining methods as well as describing the skills required to make fine jewellery – silve, gold and opal. 140 colour Pictures as well as charts and maps. There is an extensive Glossary as well as a ‘Quick Gude’ list of must-have’s and must-do’s. “

Opal Cutting Made Easy

” Within these pages you will successfully learn to cut Opal, step-by-step at your own pace. You will discover how to: Cut your first opal, Orient the color, Cut standard sizes, Make doublets and triplets, Treat matrix opal, Cut Lightning Ridge black, Mexican and Boulder opal, buy rough and much more. “

Queensland Opal Cutters A Study of Opal Cutting Techniques

Opal Mining and Mining Areas

Beautiful Yowah & Koroit

Beautiful Coober Pedy; Home of the Desert Opal

Beautiful Lightning Ridge: Home of the World Famous Black Opal

Beautiful Australian Opals: A Field Guide

Coober Pedy - Opal Capital of the World

Coober Pedy: Opal Wonderland of Australia

A Field Guide to Australian Opals

“159 pages with numerous color photos. Numerous color photos highlight this practical and authoritative field guide that names every recorded opal deposit in Australia and pinpoints its location.”

Australian opal safari

” This 1973 book is about searching and finding opals in Australia. Where to go in the Outback, how to find them and what you need to do it. Lots of color photos.”

White Man in a Hole

” An incredible factual book about Coober Pedy opal fields, a place where people live underground. “

Stories about Opal and Opal Mining

Rainbow Warriors: An anecdotal collection of experiences as told by old miners of Andamooka and the opal fields

” This literary piece has had a very long gestation. Not so much in the stories that the miners themselves had related to me. Rather it was more about creating it so that you the reader will view and come to appreciate that part of the human spirit that is in all of us. That these individuals from whatever background who came to the Australian opal fields reached deep within that part and endured to seek out riches; some failed, and those that remained were rewarded. Either financially or by adding to the tapestry that became Andamooka. Enabling them to add to and enrich as did the first nation people the essence that gives this country its character and national identity.

Each story and photo is just a snap shot, a tease to give you that appreciation of those characters that were Opal miners. Also it was a time that political correctness, gender equality, vilification whether racial, nationality, or of your sex status was non-existent. One could say that you were human with all your flaws on show regardless of who you were or how you perceived your own self-importance. The community and the environment put you in your place.

It is to fellow compatriots and to all the miners and their families that have bled for the pursuit of Opal in Andamooka, Australia, that this book is dedicated. If it was not for them and sitting down at their camps drinking and listening to their tales, gleaning fact from fiction from those miners that were affected by these stories or recall the events that happened to their mates that I hope I give justice to those tales. As each one passes their knowledge, their endeavour, their life, their essence of living and of having been, is lost so I give you the reader some insight as to what life these pioneer fortune hunters had and is now part of the fabric that is Australian history. “

Lightning Ridge

” The Land of Black Opals.

In this book, Ion Idriess tells of his beginnings, of his childhood in Lismore, Tamworth and Broken Hill, of his apprenticeship in bushcraft, and of the growing love for the Australian Outback which illumines all his work. He tells of the jobs he had – as rouseabout, horse breaker, horse tailer, shearer – and of his wanderings to the opal mines of Lightning Ridge. He became one of the band of opal-seekers who live in these pages, sharing their heartbreaks and their sudden, wild exulatations. And the stories he tells of his mates are little gems in themselves, vivid in characterization, rich in sympathy and understanding.

In the descriptions of opal gouging, and the technique of “clipping” and “facing” opals, Idriess is in his element. Obviously his heart has been completely captured by these magic stones of flame and orange, in which, it seems to him, all the life and the colour of centuries have been imprisoned… Lightning Ridge throws light on the author’s own background, and is a lively account of the rough camaraderie of life in the bush and on the opal fields. – Adelaide Advertiser, 1940. “

Your Feet Take You to Where Your Heart Is

The author wrote this book because “I lived in Lightning Ridge with migrants from about fifty countries and they all have a story to tell. When dealing with opals, love and betrayals play a big part. There are joys and tragedies and excitement, and especially hope.

“I feel that I have added to the mosaic of opal adventure. Some books are written about opal, but none about opal miners. This unique industry began in the late 1800s and it blossomed with the influx of migrants in the 1960s. I also wrote migrant stories as an adult education teacher.”

Originally from Slovenia, Cilka Zagar now resides in Lightning Ridge, Australia.

“Slovenia, where I come from, is a jewel of central Europe. Our neighbors coveted and annexed much of Slovenian land, so the country is now very small. After WWII, some aspirational Slovenians escaped from communism and many came to Australia.

“I worked as a primary school teacher and an accredited interpreter. “I have been an Aboriginal liaison officer and have often represented the views of Aborigines and migrants. I write fiction and non-fiction, and had books published in English and Slovenian languages.

“I had my first stories and poems published when I was 12.”

Lightning Ridge, Australia, the world’s opal capital, has miners from over fifty countries, who brought with them their political and religious beliefs, traditions, and memories.

Gradually they created a unique society with a new culture, character, morals, and ideals.

You never know who is who in Lightning Ridge, says Bill, an old opal miner. Aborigines and Europeans, doctors and illiterates, policemen and criminals, all camp next to each other, looking for the same rainbow in the clay beneath the sandstone.

Prospectors come to Lightning Ridge in search of the elusive rainbow gem that will make them instantly rich and respected. The hope to find a red-on-black opal is the dream these opal miners live on.

Ratting is the worst crime possible in an opal mining community. Ratters are miners who masquerade as prospectors, but they wait until a miner hits opal and then loot his mine.

These stories are also about the women who loved and followed their adventurous men searching for their rainbow in the heart of Australian wilderness.

The seven stories in this book are based on real people and events. Each story can be read separately or as one book. Set in Lightning Ridge and in Canberra, the tales span from 1938 to present day.

Love on the opal fields

” Lightning Ridge, the world’s opal capital, has miners from over fifty countries; they brought with them political and religious beliefs, traditions and memories. Gradually they blended into a unique society with a new culture, new character, new morals and ideals. Prospectors come to Lightning Ridge in search of the elusive rainbow gem that would make them instantly rich, loved, and respected. A hope to find a Red on black opal, is the dream Lightning Ridge opal miners live on. Ratters are gem thieves who masquerade as prospectors, wait until a miner hits opal and then loot his mine. Ratting is the worst crime possible in the eyes of Lightning Ridge opal mining community. You never know who is who in Lightning Ridge, says Bill, an old opal miner. Aborigines and Europeans, doctors and illiterates, policemen and criminals camp next to each other and look for the same rainbow in the clay beneath the sandstone. “

Lightning Ridge Colourful Gems

” Lightning Ridge is an outback opal-mining town in North West of NSW Australia. The population fluctuates from three to twenty thousand depending on the latest opal rush. This, the world’s opal capital, has miners from over fifty countries; they brought with them political and religious beliefs, traditions and memories. Gradually they blended into a unique society with a new culture, new character, new morals and ideals. Prospectors come to Lightning Ridge in search of the elusive rainbow gem that would make them instantly rich, loved, and respected. Ratters are gem thieves who masquerade as prospectors, wait until a miner hits opal and then loot his mine. Ratting is the worst crime possible in the eyes of Lightning Ridge opal mining community. Red on black opal is the dream Lightning Ridge opal miners live on. “

Dream Hunters

” Strike it rich enough and your every dream will become a reality. Such is the fervent belief of the prospectors who trek into the desert, prepared to gamble all in search of precious gems… and that one big strike that will transform their lives – making them outrageously rich. Living conditions at the Australian desert location of Andamooka are almost primitive, for the town has none of the comforts of modern living. Being a settlement without full town status, Andamooka is also without a police presence – a fact that encourages wanted criminals from Sydney and Melbourne to use it as a hideout and prompts the Press throughout Australia to liken it to the Badlands of America’s Wild West. DREAM HUNTERS follows on from the success of POMS DOWN UNDER and continues the thrilling, fact-based accounts of gold and gem mining in the Sixties by British, European and Australian prospectors. “

FRAGILE BLACK HEART - A pictorial journey of Lightning Ridge

” Fragile Black Heart is a collection of photographs and a short film about the people of Lighting Ridge, NSW. Inspired by my late mother, Marisol Di Paolo, a former resident of ‘the Ridge’, I embarked on a personal journey to discover why the black opals of Lightning Ridge lured my mother, just as it did for so many others, to abandon the security and comforts of mainstream urban society for life in this harsh and remote mining town. After my mother’s death in late 2005, she left her precious camp in Nebia Hill to me. I have spent two years, interviewing and photographing the town and its people. This is my journey to understand my mother’s passion for the Ridge, her fondness for its inhabitants, and her love affair with the mysterious black opal. The images celebrates the freedoms, cultures and characters. Each face tells a compelling sorry. Stories of passion, adventure, pain and glory. “

Fragile Black heart book and DVD is a limited edition of 2000.

The Ratters of Lightning Ridge

This adventure centers around two leading characters: Rusty a 40-year-old opal miner, and Kate, a 60-year-old, tough-as-nails woman who raises sheep and cattle when she is not mining opal. This story captures a sense of intrigue and calamity that continues to happen between opal miners, “ratters” (people who steal opal), and animals of the Outback area of Lightning Ridge, Australia.

From Rags to Riches

” The Story of a Migrant from Austria who’s dream is to find the The illusive Opal which he called Rainbow Rock, In his quest it took him and his family to Andamooka, a South Australian Opal Mining town where he spent just on three years and in this time he experienced a lot of hardship, toil and tribulation from Disasters to Murder and Suicide, none of these stopped him to follow his dream. Due to his stamina and powerful desire to find Opal, he turned his life From Rags to Riches. It is an excellent book full of adveture and action. If you are an Opalholic or adventure person you most certainly will appreciate this book. “

A Man From Andamooka

” The Story of an Austrian Migrant in the search for the illusive “Rainbow Rock” namely Opal, The exoperiences he had in mining this prescious stone, which took him to the outback of South Australia to a mining town by the name of Andamooka. This is where he experienced Murder, Suicide, Plane Crash, Disasters, Despair etc. The year was 1969. If you are a Opal Lover then you surely will enjoy this publication. Also a Adventures Person will like this book. “

Lightning Ridge; Adventures of an Opel-Seeker

Struck by lightning : a factual account of life on the black opal fields of Lightning Ridge, Australia, full of surprises and loaded with humorous anecdotes

” A factual account of life on the black opal fields of Lightning Ridge, Australia, full of surprises and loaded with humorous anecdotes. “

Lightning Ridge: Home of the Black Opal, Unique to the World

” Gan Bruce completes the picture with legends and tales of the almost unbelievable characters who toiled and fought in their lust for the Black Opal- the Queen of Gems. “

I left my hat in Andamooka

” An odyssey through the Australian Outback. “

In Search of Opal

” Well illustrated throughout with color photographs of Australia’s opal mining operations; the text is followed by a short section of color photographs of opal specimens. Doctor Archie Kalokerinos left his practice in the outback for a time to pursue his passion for opals, and headed for the Central Australian opal field of Coober Pedy. As the months went by he, like many before him, was gripped by the fascination of the desert and the elusiveness of opal. At last he struck opal, and his account of this strike is one of the most exciting mining stories ever told. “

STONES OF FIRE - A Woman's Experiences in Search of Opal

Old Books about Australian Opal

They Struck Opal!

Tales of men and mines in the heyday of Australian opal

Lightning Ridge. The Land of the Black Opals

Opals & Gold: Wanderings & Work on the Mining & Gem Fields

The author travels through Australia and the then territory of New Guinea prospecting and exploring for gold, ‘molybdenite’ and pearls with a changing band of fellow prospectors. Among the various mining anecdotes they encounter Aborignal people and describe their customs, ceremonies and rituals.

Opal: The Gem Of The Never Never

“One of the most important books ever written about precious opal, especially about black opals of Australia… All of it is highly readable and informative, with valuable first-hand information that every future work on Australian opal must consider before going to press.”-​-​Gemology by J. Sinkankas, entry no. 7311.

Rare Opals

The story of the noble opal

Opals and Agates: Or, Scenes Under the Southern Cross and the Magelhans : Being Memoirs of Fifty Years of Australia and Polynesia : With Nine Illustrations

” At the suggestion of friends, I have herein collated, for publication, some rambling recollections, drawn from a diary that was first started in 1846. I hold that, neither the era of Dampier (circa 1690), nor of Cook (in 1770), nor of Macquarie (in 1820), bears so deep an interest for posterity as those fateful, stirring years, during which, thanks to her gold, Australia rose, from being a mere convicts’ wilderness, to become one of the most advanced and interesting countries in the world. And, besides this, not only is truth, at times, stranger, and more readable, than fiction, but a book, which is destitute, alike, of dialogue, plot, or hero, and in no way built upon the orthodox lines of the three-volume novel, may still—if it follows humbly in the wake of such guides as ” Robinson Crusoe,” or the ” Essays of Elia “—hope to find some readers ; so, I venture. “

Fiction

Opal Song

” Especially a place where the magical sediments of an ancient sea run in seams below the shifting sands of a desert? Three medical doctors, who find themselves in a desolate outback South Australia, are about to find out. All three have secrets-and some are darker than others.

Cari is a young Welsh doctor working in a major Australian hospital. “On the Autism spectrum”, she has trouble reading others’ motives. She flees her lover, Richard, to work in Manguri, a remote opal-mining town. Here maverick miners dynamite the parched ground in pursuit of the precious gemstone. Samson, a kind-hearted surgeon from India, is already contracted there.

It isn’t long before Richard tracks her down-and this ex has more than one reason to try and convince her to return to the city.

With shades of The Rosie Project and the TV series The Good Doctor, the reader goes on a ride filled with black humour, intrigue and medical drama that soars across the UK, Australia and India. The magic of opal sustains and shapes. But is it enough to shed chains of guilt and recrimination? “

Rendezvous on the Opal Fields (Rendezvous Murders)

” Almost four years after the tragic death of her husband Ana begins a journey, from her haven in Port Lincoln to cross the vast Australian continent to Darwin, with her infant son Piet. A new job and a new life. But a past ghost finds her; a past friend becomes more, and a new friend has troubles of her own and revenge on her mind. In the hot outback town of Coober Pedy Piet disappears. Ana must challenge the vengeful ghost and find her son before the tide of international drug and opal trade overwhelms them all. “

The Opal Desert

” The Opal Desert is the story of three women from different generations with unresolved issues in their lives who meet in the fictitious NSW town of Opal Lake. Kerrie, in her 40s, has just lost her famous sculptor husband who had been the centre of her existence and for whom she made many sacrifices and she now finds her life has lost direction. Shirley, approaching 80, was betrayed by her lover many years before and has retreated from the world, becoming a recluse living in an underground dugout. Anna, 19, has a promising athletic career but is torn between the commitment to her sport, or enjoying life like other young people. The friendship that develops between these three women, who meet in the strangely beautiful but desolate landscape of the opal fields, helps them resolve and come to terms with the next stage of their lives. “

The Curse of the Radiant Opal

” While on a casual trip through Australia before settling down as a high school teacher in Minnesota, Anskar Thorston stops at an outback village, Wallagulla, where the rarest, most beautiful gemstone in the world is found. He is just passing through but finds a small, insignificant opal by “noodling” in the old tailings. Then another, and decides to stay a day or two. Then a week or two. So strong is the enticement of the black opal, which he had never heard of, that he, like the other miners, is ready to fling his future into a hole in the ground in pursuit of these gems. The Aboriginals believe these stones to be the eyes of the half–devil, half serpent, Ooluhru, who lives in a hole and lures men with flashing colored shafts of evil magic and has the power to dominate, curse and destroy, but Anskar does not believe this superstitious nonsense. He settles into the outback world, first sleeping on the ground, then in a tent, surrounded by the most poisonous snakes in the world, two inch ants that bite and sting, numerous insects, poisonous centipedes, kangaroos that come and go in waves and beautiful birds that serenade even in temperatures of 130+. He has many encounters as he meets the locals, some of whom have the wallies (outback crazies) and some, like Two Bob Bobby, who succumb to the curse, which lures them into a delightful suicide. But not for him. He is not superstitious and is fanatical in the pursuit of his stone, his Radiant Opal, known as the “fatal” stone, which once possessed, possesses the possessor. “You will die with it in you hand,” says the professor, a loquacious outbacker. Then, in the midst of his opal obsession, he encounters Helga, a young woman who works in the Swedish Embassy in Sydney and is quite taken with her. They are both of ancient Viking descent and she is on a quest of her own, a female family tradition, to rescue and heal a wounded Viking. “Come with me,” she says, but he is not ready. He must find his Radiant Opal. They part, but he dreams of her under the loneliness of the outback stars. Our protagonist has many more encounters with greed, animosity, threats, covetousness, lust, kindness and friendship. Join Anskar as his passions take him from the height of ecstasy to the gates of madness. “

Scales of the Rainbow Serpent

According to a local aboriginal tribe, the legendary Rainbow Serpent passed Harlequin Hills – the ficticious opal mining settlement – in the beginning of time (the Dream Time). As it slid between three steep buttes scales were torn from its body. The scales drifted to nearby Harlequin Hills and were embedded in the ground. These scales of the rainbow serpent are the precious opal which white men seek. This novel, written by an opal miner is about real miners with authentic descriptions of the locale, of mining, buying and opal processing. Opal is Australia’s National Gemstone, beloved by Americans and described by William Shakespeare in Twelfth Night as “this miracle and queen of gems”.

Despite its popularity, little is known about the stone and there is widespread confusion about the different types of opal. This novel expunges the ignorance and readers learn as they are entertained.

Matt Gould travels to the arid country of central Australia seeking a childhood friend, Val Brumby Heath. The name Brumby dates from when, in his schooldays, he was bullied by older boys. Now, to boost his meager financial resources, he challenges miners to ride him as a horse. If he manages to unseat them, which he succeeds in more often than not, he wins the wager.

The resident opal buyer, Jonas Wade, universally hated, discovered the field with an aboriginal helper. his comely daughter, Cappy, is infatuated with Brumby Heath.

Another feminine resident, Maggie, has travelled to the field seeking her opal mining father who, with his partner, was one of the first miners. Matt is captivated by her exotic beauty and drawn to her despite her sleazy occupation.

Unsuccessful at mining, the partners plot to rob opal buyer Wade, the obvious route to instant wealth. But Maggie is determined to stop Matt from participating in their mad scheme and uses her feminine wiles with violent results.

Brumby is stranded on a lofty butte in a seemingly inextricable situation with the police closing in….

The Opal Seekers

1898. Battling deprivation in Ireland, Trella Court has no choice but to turn her husband’s brother Brodie out of the house. What else could she do with a family to feed? A bitter Brodie travels to Dublin, where he’s offered a passage to Australia — a land, it’s rumoured, of untold riches. Arriving in Brisbane, Brodie is soon recruited by the owner of Fairlea cattle station. But the sight of a dazzling opal necklace in a jeweller’s window leaves him with a dream. He vows one day to find the mesmerising stones and make his fortune. Brodie adjusts well to life at the station, but when his passionate affair with the spoilt mistress causes trouble, he decides to leave and join the hunt for opals. Yet back in Ireland, a destitute Trella and her son are boarding a ship bound for Australia. Can Brodie’s obsession with opals save them from ruin, or will it spell tragedy for them all?

Opal Books for Children

Dinopal: Dinosaurs, Opals and mysteries in the Australian Outback

Make a fortune overnight,” Josh’s dad said. “Easy as…”  But he didn’t say anything about opal thieves…

When Josh and his dad went to Lightning Ridge they didn’t expect to be caught up in a fossilised dinosaur bone drama. Nor did they expect to risk their lives underground in a collapsing opal mine miles away from help. Will they foil the robbers? Will the opalised bone be safe?

Awesome Opals (The Glittering World of Gems)

” Profiles the opal, discussing where it is found, what it is made of, what makes it valuable, and how it is mined. “

Opals (Gems: Nature's Jewels)

” It’s hard to believe that opals come from the same element that makes sand, but it’s true. This book features that fact and many more about this beautiful gem. From the mines of southern Australia to pieces of very expensive jewelry, readers will see how opals go from raw stones to a fantastic finished product. Beautiful photographs present the rainbow of colors that brilliantly emit from these gems. “

Opal Town: Footprint Reading Library 5 (Footprint Reading Library: Level 5)

” People from around the world travel to Coober Pedy, Australia, with hopes of getting rich. This town is full of valuable stones called ‘opals’. Some opals are worth millions, but they are extremely hard to find. What influences the value of an opal? What does it take to find them? “

Spark of opal

” For eight years, Mike and May Watson and their two children, 15-year-old Liz and 13-year-old Bill, have lived in a dug-out home in an Australian opal-mining town. Big strikes are being made on the opal field and Mike has a hunch that he is about to find his “parcel,” the one that will make them rich, but time is running out. At the end of the year the Watsons must move to Adelaide and live with Grandma Birch so that Liz can go to high school.

For Bill, leaving the Opal Town means losing his best friend Steve, his dog Potch and the free life he loves. For Liz, it means abandoning the Aboriginal girl, Kathy, who depends on her. In a desperate attempt to find a different solution to the family’s problems, the young people embark on a dangerous plan. “

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