While Sydney, Australia prepares for the 2000 Olympics in its brash, Down Under flair, the uptight psychologist, Dr. Peter Pinowski, attends a transformational retreat in the Blue Mountains. Friendless, jobless, and clueless, he hopes to “Find the Way Home,” as the seminar’s brochure promises. Instead, he hurtles headlong into his own personal Olympics when he takes the road less traveled during a forced hike with the group.
Peter becomes hopelessly lost and injured in the Australian bush. Terrified, he hears the eerie laughter of a kookaburra, which, according to Aboriginal tradition, wakes humans from their dreams. The laughing bird calls him to triumph over the anxiety and despair that plague him from his childhood, when he migrated from America with his conflict-ridden Polish parents to Sydney, where he never felt at home.
When he’s rescued by seminar participants, misfits also seeking their true “home,” he bonds with an unlikely cast: Thomas, a gay ex-priest, who contracts HIV; Celeste, a massage therapist, who desires Peter – as well as the local rugby team; and three co-dependent therapists, each with a truckload of relationship issues, who get Peter a counseling job at their agency.
As the Olympic torch lights the way across Australia, Peter and his new-found friends confront inner demons, and each other, searching for inner peace. In order to “win the gold,” he must face the fractured relationship with his alcoholic father, treat eccentric clients who mirror his unraveling life, and battle a dysfunctional counseling program, more psycho than therapeutic.
Can Peter stand tall like a champion and find the way home, or will the kookaburra have the last laugh?
“Kookaburra’s Last Laugh is a fast-paced, insightful, laugh-out-loud funny, and poignant novel by Leonard Szymczak. Don’t miss it!” Laura Taylor, award-winning author of 22 novels
“As a fun-loving storyteller, Leonard makes me laugh while I explore my inner feelings. Thumbs up!” Mari Frank, author of From Victim to Victor
“This story’s premise is exciting, fresh, and original . . . The narrative is skillfully written in a bold first-person point-of-view and is a fine piece written with the touch of a seasoned writer.” Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Editorial Review
“That master weaver of psychological thrillers, Leonard gave us another page-turner. What’s more fun than reaching inward to meet ourselves and battle our own demons?” fresh, and original, and it really piqued my interest.” Dana Beal, author of The Extraordinary Workplace: Replacing Fear with Trust and Compassion
“This creative journey serves as a blueprint for our own journey back home to our True Self!” Maria Mar, author of Angelina and the Law of Attraction
“The author takes us on a wild and humorous journey through trials, victories, and defeats. What a ride!” Harry Tucker, author in 97 Things Every Project Manager Should Know
Recipient of the Independent Publisher Book Awards Silver Medal.