Helen Porter Mitchells life was both blessed and marred by tragedy. Showing early musical promise, her dreams were abruptly halted by the deaths of her mother and sister. She endured further upheavals and sadness before eventually becoming one of the greatest opera singers of all time: Dame Nellie Melba. She travelled the world at a time when very few could (let alone women), venturing into the unknown to pursue her chosen career. Despite an uncertain start, she was soon greeted with raptuous acclaim wherever she went. She raised huge funds for charities and also encouraged others to sing through her teaching. Australias Nightingale is an introduction to her life and is the third in the Inspirational Australian Women series.