Michael Moran was born and educated in Australia and has led a varied and colourful life. He spent his twenties wandering the islands of Polynesia and Melanesia and lived on Norfolk Island for several years, during which time he set up a radio station. He has recently published a novel, Point Venus, in Australia, and now lives and works in London.
Beyond the Coral Sea: Travels in the Old Empires of the South-West Pacific (Text Only)by Michael Moran
A romantic and adventurous journey to the hidden islands and lagoons beyond Papua New Guinea and north of Australia.East of Java, west of Tahiti and north of the Cape York peninsula of Australia lie the unknown paradise islands of the Coral, Solomon and Bismarck Seas. They were perhaps the last inhabited place on earth to be explored by Europeans, and even today many remain largely unspoilt, despite the former presence of German, British and even Australian colonial rulers.Michael Moran, a veteran traveller, begins his journey on the island of Samarai, historic gateway to the old British Protectorate, as the guest of the benign grandson of a cannibal. He explores the former capitals of German New Guinea and headquarters of the disastrous New Guinea Compagnie, its administrators decimated by malaria and murder. He travels along the inaccessible Rai Coast through the Archipelago of Contented Men, following in the footsteps of the great Russian explorer ‘Baron’ Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay.The historic anthropological work of Bronislaw Malinowski guides him through the seductive labyrinth of the Trobriand ‘Islands of Love’ and the erotic dances of the yam festival. Darkly humorous characters, both historical and contemporary, spring vividly to life as the author steers the reader through the richly fascinating cultures of Melanesia.‘Beyond the Coral Sea’ is a captivating voyage of unusual brilliance and a memorable evocation of a region which has been little written about during the past century.Note that it has not been possible to include the same picture content that appeared in the original print version.
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Moran's style of writing just left me cold and unimpressed. The title and the intro leads one to believe that the journey in and around PNG is a sailing adventure to islands unfamiliar to readers yet within the first few pages he mentions that kids sailing toy sailboats in a pond would be the only sails he'd ever see, I was crushed. It appears, and this is just a personal opinion, that the other set out to the PNG region to write a story and found out that where he traveled there wasn't much to write about. This book was better left unwritten. I'm sorry for the bad review.