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Being an "old" friend of Jenny's and having been overseas with her I found her book a" blast from the past". I loved reading every page telling of our innocent young 21 year old selves getting up to our exploits when finally let out of our institutions.!!! She is a great story teller. - Beverley Corey


I was one of the fortunate ‘Innocent Nurses Abroad’  and feel Jen’s book was a delightful and accurate account of our travels way back in 1968. Beginning with our time aboard the ‘Fairstar’, [almost the last of the boat people], to working with the ‘Knightsbridge Nursing Agency’, travels through Europe in the unreliable bus ‘Dennis’ and exploring the U.K. It’s a wonderful story of treasured memories and friends. Jen has captured the excitement of exploring places previously just names or shapes in an atlas with such enthusiasm and good humour even when things didn’t go to plan. This was the common thread, expect the unexpected ‘cos that will occur! Jen’s writing does tell of the amazing bonds between ‘the nurses’ and the good times we shared and treasure to this day. - Margaret McIvor


I loved reading  Innocent Nurses Abroad a relaxing humorous memoir that meanders through North Africa and Europe, when life was much simpler and humour was the common language. Overarching the whole story  Jenny held my intrigue with the  "Love Barometer" swinging between two gorgeous men, right until the last pages.  What a battle for this gorgeous spirited young ladies hand ! My favourite part and laugh out loud moment was when all their luggage, bra's and knickers fell out onto a dusty Egyptian road, only to be discovered and  proudly worn by a truck load of Arab men  ! Beautifully written with Jenny's  gentle ,dry  humour delivering the same tonic to the soul as catching up with a dear friend, reliving memories and having a good laugh over a bottle of wine.  - Allison MacMillan


‘Innocent Nurses Abroad’ is a very personal account of a nursing graduate’s exploits from Melbourne to London and Europe in the 1960’s.

A story cleverly interwoven with steadfast friendships, adventure, humour and romance.  Jenny has written with an openness and honesty that willingly draws the reader alongside  her journey.  She has crafted an enlightening journal of how the world was then travelled by a group of innocent nurses from southern Australia. - Anne Howard

A fabulous captivating story.... written truthfully from the heart with fun passion, humour and charm - embracing every situation with the innocence of youth - falling into a roaring love affair with a delightful Scotsman-arriving home to the waiting arms of the true love of her life. Not being a great reader yet I could not put Innocent Nurses Abroad' down totally absorbing me!' I'm NOT the reader but....... both your books have held my attention-you write cleverly to make us want to turn the page!! My style of book....'truthful and the love' !!!! Yes the love story! Brilliant Jen. From the innocent’ good' girl in Denni to nurse, to outback country girl cooking rough and hosting millions, to successful corporate speaker for NUSKIN dressed to kill, to now famous author is nothing short of hugely impressive to me. Astonishing loads of Love and admiration for you Jen. - Daphne Long, Tamworth 

Innocent Nurses Abroad by Jenny Old is a charming testament to friendship and the pitfalls of travel. For those of us of a certain age it is a pleasant reminder of the fun and freedom of our own youthful travel, and younger readers, I am sure, will be fascinated by a world that existed quite well before mobile phones and computers. Jenny Old’s dry wit and rueful good humour, so evident in her first book, Back of Beyond, keeps Innocent Nurses bubbling along. You will find yourself smiling at the trials and tribulations, as the author skillfully shares her fond and funny memories of some very innocent nurses abroad for the very first time. - Donald Macdonald


I am writing to say OMG your book “Innocent Nurses Abroad’ was such a reminder of myself and friends in Europe and London. Yes sharing a small house with numerous people coming and going….how did we do it. I really enjoyed reading your story which was so close to my heart more ways than one except I did not fall in love with the future man of my dreams as I departed for the UK. I look forward to your next story - Pam Wettenhall, Artist Deniliquin NSW


Reading this book was a chance to reminisce on the very changing times of the 60’s era.  It was a most liberating time and evident more so for young Women.  Breaking away from past conventions. Putting behind narrow-minded restrictions. Nothing is more evident than the young nurses travelling abroad so as to celebrate their independence and open their minds to the cultures of other people’s lives in various countries. In this book you gleam an insight to adventurous nature life of these free spirited young nurses. An enjoyable and  a fun read. - Peter Mignani, Gold Coast

I have been in Sydney this past week and spent many hours in a motel room which gave me time to read your new book. What a delightful read - I enjoyed every page and oh what an adventure you had!
I'm so glad Scotland lost and Australia won!! - Stan Hope

What an amazing book, Jenny took me to the outback bush and it was amazing to be part of the experience of living on the land and be part of the adventure. It read so well my son who is 12 years old read the book in one week he could not put it down. I am really excited to read the next book Innocent Nurses Abroad. Thank you Jenny for sharing your amazing experiences with us all. - Jimmy Zeniou

Innocent, the amigos certainly were. Adding spice to Jenny's tale, they were lucky some of their rollicking episodes didn't land them in real strife. The voyage to London, work, parties and love affairs, the tempo keeps you wondering what's next. With genuine and honest sharing of her feelings for two special guys in her life, she makes you keen to find out which one is THE one. Aussie or Scot. She just keeps changing her mind!!! right till the end. But, she did choose well, finally. - Roma Littlejohn

'Innocent Nurses Abroad' - Another excellent read which flows rapidly from one story or adventure to another! I was captured from the very first page, the feeling of being right there through all the ups and downs of the journey these girls went through. What they did just couldn't happen today. As with 'Back of Beyond', I didn't want this book to end! Brava, Jenny! - Celia Clarkson


'Innocent Nurses Abroad' is a fantastic reminisce of my travels with Jen as one of  ‘the amigos’ in 1968. Jenny has managed to incorporate the fun, education and survival along with a lot of good luck when trusting our lives to two naive English young men, prospective travel agents and a bus called Dennis. Jen has managed to write of the magic bonds that eventuated from the fifteen weeks of basic camping on limited funds and coping with a very unreliable old school bus. The book also tells of life and loves and the highs and lows of a young ladies decisions and future destiny. I look forward to discussing this book with my children as It tells of such a different travel experience from the present when quick trips to destinations are cheap and simple and technology can keep you in contact for no cost. Of course this also means a lack of letters to fall back on when memories are fading. This book is a top read for older folk who will identify with the experiences and for younger people to compare travel in the 60’s to the present day. - Margaret McIvor

Jenny is an author who makes you feel like you're sitting having a chat with her as she recounts these stories of her life. Innocent Nurses Abroad is a rolling yarn of her and the amigos travelling to London and "touring" Europe when doing so was considered very risky for a group of "innocent" girls! The fun, the not so fun, the problems that cropped up and how they delt with them make for a book that keeps you interested right through to the end. Then, if you haven't already, you need to read Back of Beyond to know the rest. - Alison Carter


I thoroughly enjoyed the girls adventures and pleased they survived to tell the tale. My cat Mistie loved the book as well. - Tina Fulton-Kennedy

As I read ‘Innocent Nurses Abroad’, I had wonderful flashbacks to my own travel adventures in Europe and South East Asia. I really loved the detailed descriptions of all the cities ... gardens, buildings, people, markets and their particular unique atmosphere .... and the dual love story definitely kept me guessing.  It was so engaging, I couldn’t put it down. I finished it in two days and I want to read more ... looks like I’ll be buying ‘Back of Beyond’ this week. Thanks for the inspiration Jenny. I’ve finally started to write my prequel too. - Pip Coleman

Congratulations to you for your new book it was a great read and I thought good marketing with regard to the time that the 2 books were written.It encouraged me to read Back of Beyond again. - Terry Murtagh


Innocent Nurses Abroad is another wonderful read from Jenny Old. Join Jenny and her friends on their adventures as they explore the world, friendships and relationships. I really enjoyed reading about places where I have also travelled, and seeing them from another perspective. There are many entertaining stories along the way and the battle to win Jenny's heart is full of suspense! - Karen North


This is a fun read about travel overseas in the 60’s. I loved the pictures and I’m sure every Australian will relate to the stories Jenny has so eloquently written. Look forward to reading Back of Beyond. - Carofish

What is it about nurses who love travel and adventure, mini coopers and Labradors?  You touched on my life in so many ways. Briefly, I did my nurse training in London and did my midwifery in Fulham.  Visited Europe extensively.  You mentioned places in Spain that I had been to.  First learnt about bum pinching in Costa del Sol and fell in love briefly with a gorgeous Spaniard (I did say briefly). Did a couple of years in Toronto, Canada then came back to London.  Your arrival back to Sydney made me laugh – my situation was almost identical.  My family came to meet me at the railway station and walked straight past me because they didn’t recognise me.  I had gained weight and my choice of fashion turned out to be a wardrobe malfunction. Another point that was the same as you, I too registered in Knightsbridge Nursing Agency but that’s where my life changed forever.  I met my husband Noel.  We married in Cambridge and that is where Robert was born in 1961.  We emigrated to Australia in 1963 and never looked back.  This was our new home and have absolutely no regrets. Your description of PTS brought back memories for me, as my first nursing job was at Royal South Sydney as a Tutor Sister teaching PTS. I also nursed in Wellington, New South Wales and Dubbo – never made it to Deniliquin. Thank you Jenny for a fantastic book.  Some parts you could have been writing about me.- Sally Clark

This delightful book gives you an insightful snippet of life in the 1960’s, as Jenny and “the amigos”travel from country to country with youthful zest. Jenny colourfully paints not only each country in their travels, but the people they encounter and encapsulates all the intrigue,love and excitement along the way. - Annabel Lyons

I loved reading Innocent Nurses Abroad by Jenny Old. From the outback, to nursing in Australia and to the many adventures overseas, Jenny has a way of taking the reader right alongside her, with such vivid descriptions - it's as if you're actually there. I also really loved the way Jenny gives you such an insight into the early nursing years in Australia which is just so fascinating and such a part of Australia's history.  I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her career, travels and also learnt a lot along the way! As you turn each page 'Innocent Nurses Abroad' keeps you saying "What's going to happen next!?"   I was hoping she would choose the right man in the end - but you'll just have to read it and find out! I highly recommend 'Innocent Nurses Abroad'  and I can't wait to start reading 'Back of Beyond'! - Jacqui Preugschat

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CLICK HERE to read a review from Broadbeach City Librarian, Jenneth Duque


This is one of the best books l have read in years. Could hardly bear to put it down. Looking forward to number 2. Thank you for such a good entertaining book. - Maureen Gardiner


I received a copy of your book via my son Matthew. He was thrilled to gift it to me with your personally written message, 'Enjoy my story' - I have to say - this I absolutely did. Congratulations - it's no easy task to write such a volume successfully, let alone to have lived and worked so hard through the reality of it. Having spent some recent times in the Gulf, I particularly related to this aspect, and even more so, the special relationships you held with, and for your sons. In recent years your Ben has been an inspiring influence in my son's professional life, affording him opportunities that have led him to realise some of his own potential. If our life's effort is about anything, it is surely about lifting the aspirations and quality of life for those around us, and who follow us. From one Australian mother to another - I loved your story, thank you for living it, and for sharing it.​​​ - Lyn Hutton

What a wonderful story. What a wonderful people you are. For the guy who was born in Poland and who was fascinate by Australian outback for years, that story which I read with great pleasure gave me much more then, in my opinion, the overrated Australian movie “Australia” with Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman. I know from your blog Jenny that you are now touring with your book promotion.  Congratulation and wish you great success with your (again) wonderful story. Once again thank you for your story and to have a pleasure to met you. I would be honoured if I could meet you again some times. You are such wonderful people. - Tadeusz (Tad) Wiktorski

Just read McAllister on my iPad. I enjoyed the humorous and harrowing, at times, anecdotes of farming life in the Gulf. Congratulations on surviving, with grace and resilience, all that life has thrown your way. Makes life in the city seem pretty tame. - Jan Bull


Jenny, I just finished reading your delightful book. Loved it despite it being a woman's story, or perhaps because of that. I worked around Prairie as a young bloke just married. So much of what you've described rings bells of nosthalgia.. and some of it makes me cringe with shame and hope. The shame at my chauvinism... the hope that I too am now more of a SNAG. I'd love to meet you and Rick one day but not unannounced and not to stay. A great read. Well done!! - Peter Beinssen


I have just put your book down after reading the last page. I felt sad at the end to read of your leaving McAllister. It was a wonderful read so congratulations. What an amazing life you lead there and your strength and courage all along. I loved reading it and getting an insight into the hard life of developing a station in the wilderness. I couldn't believe that you had so many visitors and constantly. All that cooking as well! You are a marvel. - Marguerite Abbott


My husband Keith wanted to take your book to hospital to read...bad luck! He started it and couldn't put it he only saved himself a few pages to read. He has asked me to contact you to say how much he enjoyed your book..he said it was a really good yarn! How about another one??!! - Sue Flewell-Smith


A great read from cover to cover.... I wish we had known you then, a fantastic story of battles & victories, some were momentous & others small but all a part of the story. - Phil Jarratt

Rick, your wife is a bloody nuisance! I collected the books (thanks) from the PO at 6:30pm. Apart from time for a quick meal, and 45 min of some writing for me, I have been totally rapt in McAllister, an unable to put it down! I have only forced myself to do so in order to get some flu-fighting rest.  Just a bloody fabulous book! Me being off the land (sheep & cattle) helps to  make it an enthralling read. Cheers and the most powerful possible congratulations to Jenny. - J L

My family and I worked for Jen and Rick at a cafe they owned, we became quite close and in the end knew each other very well. They are the best bosses I have ever had so I was really looking forward to Jen's book. I read it in three days, was an excellent read full of laughs and heartbreak. One highlight being picturing my male boss in the nude playing the clarinet "scary stuff". Jen was the backbone of both McAllister and her family - both would not have existed without her. The book shows that love knows no boundaries and what an outstanding selfless woman Jen was and is. It is not easy being a woman in a male dominated world but Jen paved the way and achieved brilliance. an absolute must read. - Brooke Sawtell


I have really enjoyed reading McAllister. It had me hooked from the very first page.An amazing story of the hardship of living in a remote area. I am always astounded at the resilience and kindness of country folk. Thank you Jenny for writing your book so everyone can know that life in the bush is hard but very rewarding. - Leanne Caruana


Honestly told, a history of McAllister, an important Australian story that will never be lost now. There is a love story that captures the reader in the first chapter, running through every page of the book, understated, yet the catalyst for almost everything that happened in the life of the author. Jenny turned danger, adventure and hard work into endeavour and pleasure throughout the story In the same way that you opened McAllister so generously to anyone from anywhere who chanced to turn up at your door, you have opened your heart to us with your writing Jenny. This book will be read by Australian and International readers, a fair reward for your hospitality and care for all over the 18 years you spent in the Australian Outback. Without meaning to, you have given us some elements of our own Australian Heathcliff, the dark, handsome stranger you fell in love with and portrayed so well. Rick is always there, strong and ambitious. Make no mistake tho', this is Jenny's story and the reader lives the story through the writing, an amazing achievement. Just as life becomes too serious you seem to bring in some of your own particular brand of humour to lighten the heart of the reader. When I first read this story, it was a large manuscript. Congratulations to Donald and Jenny for the editing, as nothing is lost, yet the story remains the same in this concise version. What a movie you could make. I recommend McAllister to any reader. - Helene Castles


Thank you for such a well written, most enjoyable account of your life at McAllister. My Fiancé and I moved to Normanton in 1980. He was the butcher for Rex Henry for a few years and I was working at the central hotel when we first went to Normanton.  We spent 11.5 years in Normanton and came way with wonderful memories as you and Rick did.  Leanne Caruana put me on to your book and I must say I could not put it down. Thank you for sharing your were truly pioneers.  God Bless - Joy Orr


Occasionally in one's life a book comes along that totally captivates you. McAllister by Jenny Old did just that. As spirited, warm & funny as Jenny herself, McAllister is the inspirational story of one woman's extraordinary courage, determination & most importantly 'true love'. It tells the amazing story of Jenny's incredible life in the outback in her own words with skill & humour. It totally transported me to the Gulf, an area never visited, but now want to experience. I could actually smell the vast open spaces & taste the wonderful campfire dinners, not to mention those fabulous parties! The obstacles & challengers presented in this demanding life most of us could not endure, but Jenny & Rick had a dream & gave it everything. The result is absolutely incredible. McAllister is one of those books you just can't put down. I gave a copy to my husband Jim recently to read on a trip. Jim is not a big reader but returned with glowing reports, he loved it! Well done Jenny, can't wait for the next book. - Kerry Fountain


Thank you for an inspiring story of guts, humor & love. You are an inspiration. - Margaret Capp


Loving the colourful writing, the humour,and truthfulness of the harsh Australian bush life and yet all through the constant theme of Jenny's absolute love, loyalty and adoration of her man Rick, no matter what he asked or expected of her, is crystal clear. - Daphne Long

This is one of those “must read” books. Not only is it an eye-opening story of life in outback Australia, it is also a great love story, told with humour, honesty and compassion. Jenny’s story of her eighteen years at McAllister portrays the hardships and heartbreak of bush life, but also the beauty of this remote country and the wonderful camaraderie of the bush people. Jenny’s sense of adventure, her courage and resilience are an inspiration for women everywhere. One word of warning though - once you start reading, you’ll find it hard to stop – a thoroughly enjoyable book! - Karen North

McAllister is a riveting story of love, hardship, determination, courage and pioneering spirit. No matter what the Australian outback threw at Jenny, she picked herself up, dusted herself off (or washed the mud off!) and just got on with her amazing life in the middle of nowhere. I laughed and I cried my way through this book, not wanting to put it down. A wonderful, ‘must read’ story told with Jenny’s inimitable style and sense of humour! – Celia Clarkson

I loved this book. Such an amazing story told with such openness and wonderful humor, every chapter is captivating. It got me so involved in the story that it seems I have been there and I was sorry when it finished. - Katja Kearney

I adored this heartwarming and at times heartbreaking story of Jennys life on the land. Her story encapsulates the blind faith of young love,the cherished bonds and challanges of marriage and the trials and joys of family. The book echoes the Australian spirit throughout as you meet the characters and the families of the bush and see how a place of loneliness can be transformed by friendship. As you read you will consider the choices we make in life,the chances of fate,the triumphs of hardwork and perseverance and how love can hold you up through them all. - Annabel Lyons

Words can't say how amazing this book is as it is better than that! I loved how this book was written,as I felt I was part of the struggle and good times that Rick and Jenny went through. I recommend this book for people to appreciate life . I did not want to finish as enjoyed every chapter . Thanks Jenny for sharing. - Tina Fulton-Kennedy

Congratulations on your book. I am not a regular reader, takes a good book to keep me interested enough to keep reading. Thanks for delivering the book McALLISTER  to me personally on Saturday 29th July, it is now Tuesday 2nd August and i have finished reading it. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book from cover to cover, the best book i have read. Would hate to have entertained and fed so many people under the conditions you and Rick lived in and enjoyed immensely, very special people. My wifes  maiden name was McAlister so that was special also.

Will watch for another book by you if it happens. Thanks - Barry Turvey


I was very excited to discover your book 'Macallister' in the little shop at Adels Grove this week. I am halfway through reading it and loving it - you have bought your experiences living in the Gulf in the 70s & 80s to life so beautifully! I'm travelling in the Gulf with my husband Tim for the first time since we met & fell in love while working at Lorraine Station in 1981. I did governessing for helicopter contractors based there (Bruce and Rosemary Tremain-Hill and children Lachlan & Tory). I have lots of great memories of that time - of the Flamsteads and the McDonalds (a friend's daughter Anabel is now living at Brightlands). So thank you for your magic book which is bringing that time back to life for me and giving me greater insight into the resilience of locals like yourselves. You and Rick generously lent me a horse to use at a Sedan Dip Pony Club meet - I visited MacAllister at some stage, as I got on well with Lyn Nadebaum who was governessing for you that year. Tim & I called into Lorraine homestead this week - no more 9 kms of thick bull dust driving in .. there's power and wifi!! But sad to find the 'big house' gone and replaced. I wish you every success with your book and future writing. Thanks for sharing your amazing journey. - Robyn Wheeler


I’ve just finished your fantastic book. I couldn’t put it down. I picked up your business card at Adele’s Grove a couple of weeks ago. So glad I did, I now realise how people do survive in outback. Thanks for the great read. - Ann Knoll

Recently I was given a copy of Back of Beyond and it is one of the loveliest books I have ever read. I will be passing it on to my golfing friends. Thank you. - Annette


Hello Jenny, I live in Vic on 25 acres with my two girls, hubby n I write to you I have so many emotions running through me because I bought your book (never read a book in my life) .....I have a true love of the land and horses so thought I’d read was truly a life story that I wished I was you.....I was confused about my life but all I knew was I loved horses n wanted to pursue that, I lost my parents to sudden medical issues 3yrs ago, both died within months of each other, their names were Joan and Stewart.....then when I read about your brumby foal Topaz....the water works flowed...I too also as a little girl always swore that when I ever got my own foal to bond with I’d call him topaz..(my birth stone) that’s when I decided to go to outback n.s.w and train a wild brumby.....for the first two days I couldn’t think of a name for it, then I lay in bed and truly dug deep into my heart n remembered I was meant to have Topaz in my life for a reason.....I slept well after that, trained him, got him home and it was the start of my life.....this was a few weeks I’m finishing reading your book due to me breaking my leg (while walking topaz I tripped over a shrub)....and I thought I would love nothing more than to meet you one day as this book has just made me feel so much closer to all my dreams being reality....we will be in Qld next year for a wedding, if at all you have any book launches again or are going to be somewhere that I could possibly meet you that would be the best thing ever....sorry for long message but you’re amazing and you’ve made my life feel amazing too.....I hope I get to meet you someday.....THANKYOU Jenny, Yours kindly, Kellie....x

Thank you for your amazing book Back of Beyond, I picked it up when my wife and I stopped at the Bourke and Wills road house, on our way to Karumba 3 weeks ago. First thought, traveling to the Gulf, story about someone who lived and worked in the Gulf, be something extra to read on our travels. What a surprise, once I started could not put it down, what an amazing 18 years you and Rick had up there. Thank you for taking the time to write this book, loved it from start to finish.

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