I've long felt that way about the Turks and Caicos Islands. Tourist promotions portray the country as a tropical Caribbean paradise with all those stereotypes: palm trees curving over turquoise water, fruity drinks with tiny umbrellas, women wearing sarongs and flowers behind their ears. Large resorts are happy to cater to these notions, despite the fact that their staffs are predominantly foreign and the islands themselves are neither tropical (subtropical, yes) nor Caribbean (those waters are the Atlantic Ocean, folks).
And like Australia, the Turks and Caicos are not homogenous. There are differences among the islands in geography, character and culture. Most Americans who say they have been to the Turks and Caicos have been to either a resort on Provo or the cruise ship port on Grand Turk. Salt Cay? South Caicos? Middle? Nope.
The truth is, TCI is more than a glossy brochure in blues and greens. There are people living there who have never seen the wonders of the reef because they're too busy trying to put food on their tables. Yes, there are palm trees, but there are also native trees threatened by all the invasive species. There are warm, mild nights, but there are also mosquitoes and sand flies. There are people who are friendly and eager to please a tourist, but there are also people who cheat and steal. It is a real place, not a fantasy.
My novel and my stories are attempts at showing a fuller picture of island life, just as Nick Bryant works at showing more of Australia than the cuddly koala. We both have plenty of work to do.