Thursday, June 22, 2017

Book: Trouble



Summary: When the entire high school finds out that Hannah Shepard is pregnant via her ex-best friend, she has a full-on meltdown in her backyard. The one witness (besides the rest of the world): Aaron Tyler, a transfer student and the only boy who doesn’t seem to want to get into Hannah’s pants. Confused and scared, Hannah needs someone to be on her side. Wishing to make up for his own past mistakes, Aaron does the unthinkable and offers to pretend to be the father of Hannah’s unborn baby. Even more unbelievable, Hannah hears herself saying “yes.”

What I Thought: A brilliant teenage read - this author is fantastic. It's the second one I've read but I'll be hunting out more.

Book: Life Support



Summary: A piece of you will always be left at home. When emergency nurse Emma Chirnside's husband dies unexpectedly, she finds herself tangled in lies and secrets. The last thing she expected to receive from him was a heritage-listed mansion in her home town of Birrangulla, but with her in-laws causing chaos, she flees to the country, hoping to rebuild her life. Fleeing, it turns out, creates new complications. The estate manager is none other than her teenage crush Tom Henderson. Tom hasn't thought about Emma since high school. They'd always been friendly - like Emma, Tom knows how it feels to care for a sick mother from a young age - but as far as Tom was aware, they were nothing more than friends. He had no idea of Emma's feelings for him, or the way he'd once broken her heart. When their worlds collide again, Emma realizes the depth of her feelings for Tom, and wonders if she's been given another chance to find true love. But Tom has demons of his own. Will Tom's secrets drive them apart and break her heart again? Or will they both get their happy-ever-after?




What I Thought: I'm loving this author and the rural medial romance elements. A nice read.

Book: 12 days at Silver Bells house





Summary: Kate Singleton has twelve days to find herself. With Christmas Day and her thirtieth birthday approaching, the best thing a city-chic fashion designer who no longer has a raison d’etre can do is nullify herself in the country. With Chardonnay.
When trouble strikes, the country presents her with Jamie Knight — a gallant but uncommunicative He-Man who drives an excavator and arrives to rescue Kate, her shoes and her case of Chardonnay from a boggy field.
The adventure should be over — nothing but a good story to tell to her friends in the city — but her saviour turns out to also be an unexpected roommate, the new owner of Silver Bells House, Kate’s holiday home.
Forced together and dragged into the community Christmas spirit of the town, Kate and Jamie flounder their way through mistletoe, kissing games, carolling choirs, and a bone-deep yearning for community and acceptance.
Can the enchanting Silver Bells House and the holidays bind them together? Or will love get lost on Highway B23 back to the city?


What I Thought: Nice quick rural romance - loved it!

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Book: Hillsborough Voices



Summary: On 15 April 1989, the world witnessed one of the worst football disasters in history occur at the Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield. 96 people were crushed to death and another 766 injured in a tragedy that was later admitted to have been exacerbated by police failures.
Hillsborough Voices does justice to the memory of all those who died and for all those left behind. From the tragic events of the day to what unfolded in the hours, days and eventually years that followed, the book will interweave the voices of those who were there with the families and friends of those who died, and all those who have played key roles in the long search for the truth.
The author, Kevin Sampson, has a long history with Hillsborough. Not only was he there as a fan to witness the horror first-hand, he also helped organise the Hillsborough benefit concert at Anfield and has close connections with the justice campaign. He has conducted exhaustive and exclusive interviews both with people who have become familiar public figures and those who will be telling their heart-rending personal stories for the first time – to bring us the full story.


What I Thought: Wow - just heart breaking. Had to keep putting it down as it was so harrowing. I knew a lot of the story already but it made it angry and sad. A great read.

Bookgroup book: Shanghai Tango

Summary: This unusual memoir describes how China's foremost male ballet dancer (and colonel in the People's Army) underwent one of China's first sex-change operations and became the Shanghai Ballet's prima ballerina.


What I Thought: Just didn't do it for me. Didn't believe most of what I read and the guy/girl was just so self-centred it did my head in!

Book: Country Roads



Summary: Rebecca Duprey is working day and night to keep the family sheep station, Bluestone Ridge, afloat. But Bec's father, who's been in a wheelchair since a farming mishap, keeps second-guessing her decisions. Now, to add Bec's woes, her unfaithful ex-boyfriend has started lurking around, and the adjoining farm she'd hoped to buy has been snapped up by a guy from the city called Matt Harvey.

After leaving his job in advertising, Matt became a bestselling novelist. But since the death of his fiancee in a car accident, he's had severe writer's block and is desperately hoping his move to the country will help him deal with his grief and allow him to focus on completing his next book. Problem is, he seems to have started off on the wrong foot with his new neighbour, Bec Duprey.

Bec isn't quite sure when she started feeling attracted to Matt, but she's determined not to succumb to his charms. And Matt isn't sure when his feelings changed about Bec; all he knows is he can't get her out of his mind. Can Bec and Matt overcome their fear of loss to find love and happiness with each other...?


What I Thought: Absolutely loved - bring on book #2! I love that it is set like an hour from home!

Book: Northern Heat






Summary: In steamy northern Queensland, Conor is rebuilding his shattered life. Working at Cooktown's youth centre has given him the chance to make a difference again, and the opportunity to flirt with Dr Kristy Dark. The local GP is hiding her own secrets and struggling to raise her feisty teenage daughter alone.
When a severe cyclone menaces the coast, threatening to destroy everything in its path, tensions come to a head – and the weather is not the only danger. Cut off from the world and with her life on the line, Kristy will have to summon her courage and place her trust in Conor, or they'll both lose someone they love.


What I Thought: Really enjoyed this although way too far fetched


Friday, May 05, 2017

Book: Heart of the Sky



Summary: A year after a tragic accident changed her life forever, Tess Daley is in desperate need of a change. When she is offered a position with the Flying Doctor Service, she seizes the opportunity to make a fresh start. Yet once she arrives in remote Mica Ridge she feels like an outsider, unable to connect with her patients and unsure if she'll ever fit in with this outback community.
Station owner Soretta Byrnes has grown to love the company and chaos that comes with living in a house filled with boarders. So with tenants moving out and bills piling up, it's a welcome relief to have Tess and new pilot Charlie Fennes arriving in town and looking for somewhere to stay.
As they share life's triumphs and challenges, it isn't long before everyone at the station feels like family. But Charlie has yet to reveal his motive for coming to Mica Ridge and his secret will change the life of someone in the house forever ...

What I Thought: A nice easy read - loved it. 

Book: Secret Years



Summary: When Lucy Hunter stumbles upon her grandfather's World War II memorabilia, she finds a faded photograph of a stunning young woman known simply as 'George' and a series of heartfelt letters. They are clues about the secret years, a period of Lucy's family history that has been kept a mystery . . . until now.
How did a cattleman from north Queensland find forbidden love with the Honourable Georgina Lenton of London? And why are the effects of this encounter still reverberating in the lives of Lucy and her mother, Rose, all these years on?


What I Thought: Loved this rural romance and the historical elements too.

Bookgroup: Gone Girl



Summary: There are two sides to every story. The Gone Girl is a chilling story in which Nick wakes up to find his wife of 5 years missing, Nick is immediately accused of her disappearance but Nick denies all of it, so where is his beautiful wife?


What I Thought: So much hype around this and I enjoyed the book - but didn't love it. It hooked me from the start but I got kind of bored in the middle then it got me in the end again. Ooh so nasty and a great twist. Contemplating watching the movie now...

Friday, March 17, 2017

Book: The Crossroads



Summary: One family. Three women. Will the lies they tell and the secrets they hide lead to more heartache, or will fate bring them together before it's too late?

Rosie O'Shea dreams of seeing the world. But right now, the outback hotel she inherited from her husband is falling down around her ears, her bank account is empty and family duty means she's staying put.

The only thing keeping Stephanie Bailey sane are the rides she takes on their sprawling property, even if the earth is red and barren as far as her eye can see. Drought has forced the sale of almost all their cattle and her husband is getting more and more distant. The last thing she needs is the complications her brother-in-law brings.

Sydney girl Faith Montgomery is single, out of work and at the age of 31 has just discovered she is adopted. Furious at being lied to for her entire life, she lands a job at the Crossroads Hotel so she can track down her biological mother without revealing who she is. When Cameron Bailey walks into the bar his curious blend of country charm and city savvy has her falling hard.

What I Thought: Loved this - hooked from the beginning.

Book: The House on Burra Burra Lane





Summary: Just ten days after her fresh start in the isolated Snowy Mountains, Samantha Walker trips over a three hundred pound pig and lands in the arms of Dr. Ethan Granger — and the firing line for gossip. It was hardly a ‘date’ but sparks of the sensual kind are difficult to smother in a community of only 87 people. Now there’s a bet running on how long she’ll stay and what she’ll get up to while she’s in town.

Ethan has his own issues — Sammy’s presence in his childhood home brings with it painful recollections of family scandals and a bad boy youth. When the gossip around them heightens, his life is suddenly a deck of cards spread on the table for all to see. Then Sammy's past catches up with her... and it looks like all bets are off.




What I thought: This was ok. I really really struggled with the writing style. Will read the next one in the series to see if it is better as I have loved a different book of hers.

Book: When the snow gums dance



Summary: Set against the steamy tropical north of Papua New Guinea and Australia's Snowy Mountains, the winter playground of the mega-rich, is the story of Kylie Harris, a woman with a thirst for adventure. When glamour and fun turn to tragedy, Kylie is forced to reassess her life, and she chooses to help others. As an aid worker she falls in love with Danno O'Keefe, the man of her dreams and her soul mate. Not everyone, however, can be trusted, and happiness is an elusive gift. Tragedy returns and Kylie must rebuild her life in the face of enormous pain and loss. Heartbroken, Kylie is convinced she will never again love so deeply or so passionately.
She becomes determined, however, to move forward. But can she find the courage to let go of her past?


What I Thought: I enjoyed this one. Bit more of a saga over many years and split into parts with different characters etc. but enjoyable still.

Book: The Horseman


Summary: Craig Munroe is the kind of man legends are written about. It's been eleven years since Dr Peta Woodward, born into a horse-breeding dynasty, fled the family stud in the wake of a deadly tragedy that split her family apart. Carrying wounds that have never truly healed, Peta has focused on helping others. But when an injury during a solo trip through the Australian high country leaves her stranded, the man who comes to her rescue is Craig Munroe, a born and bred high-country horseman, and the kind of man legends are written about.
Stuck in the tiny town of Yarraman Falls while she recovers, Peta is surrounded by prying eyes and heartbreaking reminders of all she has lost. But while she resolves to leave as soon as she can, fate has other ideas . . .

What I Thought: Loved this one - hooked from the first page! I'd also been up this way at Chrsitmas so the area was fresh in my mind!

Bookgroup: Death Comes to Pemberley



Summary: In their six years of marriage, Elizabeth and Darcy have forged a peaceful, happy life for their family at Pemberley, Darcy’s impressive estate. Her father is a regular visitor; her sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; the marriage prospects for Darcy’s sister, Georgiana, are favorable. And preparations for their annual autumn ball are proceeding apace. But on the eve of the ball, chaos descends. Lydia Wickham, Elizabeth’s disgraced sister who, with her husband, has been barred from the estate, arrives in a hysterical state—shrieking that Wickham has been murdered.  Plunged into frightening mystery and a lurid murder trial, the lives of Pemberley’s owners and servants alike may never be the same.


What I thought: It was ok - nice to revisit characters and see how the future may lay for them.  Still a few loose ends that weren't tied up for me in this book though. Oh well!

Book: Runaway Lies











Summary:  Darcy Montgomery is on the run. She must hide until she can testify in a shocking court case involving her former employer, but so far the witness protection program has only brought more danger. Any hopes of keeping a low profile are dashed when she saves the two children of wealthy property developer, Dominic St. James, from a sinking car driven by his ex-wife.
Dominic St. James learns the car crash was no accident and his ex-wife is still missing, presumed dead. He is determined to keep his children, as well as their mysterious rescuer, safe until the threat is neutralised. Fighting his enemies and a growing attraction, he discovers that Darcy is much more than she seems.
The danger to Darcy, Dominic and his family grows as their security is eroded and they face not one but two adversaries who have deadly intent. Who ultimately can trust who?


What I Thought: Loved this one - saw it on the shelf at the library and I wasn't disappointed.


Monday, February 06, 2017

Book: The Family Secret






Summary: Kim Richards is a creative woman of the land, a rural ambassador who’s renowned for her contribution to her community. But deep down, she’s lonely. She’s already watched the man she loves falls for someone else, and her dream of starting her own family feels like it’s slipping through her fingers.

Enter Charlie McNamara, an older man who’s arrived in Lake Grace on business. Sparks fly between Kim and Charlie, but he seems to have a hidden agenda and a past life he’s trying to hide.

They’re both drawn to local hermit Harry, a Vietnam veteran who’s haunted by memories from the war. What ties these three lost souls together? Can they solve a long-held family mystery and heal fractures of the heart?

What I Thought: A nice easy read - liked the avenues it explored. 

Book: Sapphire Falls


Summary: Fiona Forrest is devastated when her husband Charlie commits suicide after the accidental shooting of his mate Eddie. Though Fiona decides to keep farming their successful property, rumours that she intends to sell keep circulating.
When Detective Dave Burrows arrives to sign off on the investigation into Eddie's death, his suspicions are aroused by some strange anomalies at the scene. As Dave becomes increasingly convinced that something sinister is going on, Fiona finds herself dealing with a series of disasters on the farm...
By the bestselling author of Crimson Dawn, this suspenseful novel about a woman fighting to preserve her husband's dream, and a detective determined to uncover the truth will keep you guessing till the very last page.

What I Thought: A great read - sad but riveting too!

Book: Safe Harbour


Summary: When Darcy Fletcher drags a handsome sailor from a stricken yacht, she finds herself drawn into his mysterious world.  Having saved his life can she now rescue him from his dark past? Or will that endanger all she holds most dear?
Noah, keeper of the peace and guardian of the Banskia Cove secrets, knows he can’t he tell Darcy the real reason this man has washed up on their shores. If she knew the links between the stranger and her own dysfunctional family, she’d flee the Cove and he’d lose her love forever.
As they take refuge in an old whaling station, only one thing is certain – by morning, no one will be the same again. Lies will surface. Hearts will break, and not all will find safe harbour.
A heart-stopping novel of high drama and desire by Australia’s award-winning master of romantic suspense.

What I Thought: A nice action packed novel. Loved it!

Book: The next season


Summary: When Zoe Bennett’s boyfriend cheats on her, leaving her homeless, jobless and practically broke, she returns to the only place she’s ever felt safe and at home – Wildwood Point.  She hopes to heal her heart and find a job to get herself back on her feet – but she has forgotten how small Wildwood Point is.
Until a couple of months ago Shaun Elliot’s life was sweet – a job he loved and big plans for the future. Until, that is, his long-time girlfriend turned down his romantic New Year’s Eve marriage proposal in front of all their family and friends. Angry, hurt and feeling like he is the laughing stock of small town Wildwood Point, Shaun has sworn off relationships while he works out what to do with himself and his life.
The last thing he needs is to find his high school sweetheart stranded on the side of the road. She broke his heart when she left him seven years ago, but he’s never been the type to ignore someone who needs help…

What I Thought: A nice quick novella - love a quick read. 

Book: The Drifter






Summary: Cate Christie is a drifter, moving restlessly through her carefree youth until tragedy strikes, and her life is changed forever. She flees the city, seeking refuge at her great-aunt Ida’s farm in the wheatfields of Western Australia. There she finds Henry, a swagman whose dark eyes and heavy heart hold secrets he’s not willing to share. When Ida is no longer able to go on, Cate and Henry are put to the ultimate test. Together they must embrace the true meaning of family, community and love so they can lay their own ghosts to rest.

What I Thought: A nice little novel and another new author to add to the list!

Book: Half Moon Bay


Summary:  Ellie Wilding has been running from her past, but when the residents of Half Moon Bay call for help she knows it’s finally time to return home.  As an international photojournalist, she’s used to violence in war zones, but she’s shocked when it erupts in the sleepy hamlet on the north coast of New South Wales, threatening all she holds dear. Battle-weary Nicholas Lawson walked away from his military career leaving unfinished business. In a coastal backwater, that decision returns to haunt him. He remembers all too vividly his last lethal assignment in Afghanistan when Ellie’s sister, Nina, was shot and killed. Ellie’s been in his dreams ever since, even if she doesn’t remember him…
As a storm rages and floodwaters rise, Ellie struggles to save her community. But who can she trust? Nick Lawson, the dangerously attractive stranger with secrets, or an old friend who’s never let her down?

What I Thought: A great suspenseful romance - loved it!

Book: Sunset Shadows


Summary: For police officers Steve Fraser and Tess Ballard, a split-second decision saves the lives of fifty members of a cult ­- but also puts their careers on the line. Tess's work is everything to her; she's forged a new life through sheer determination, so when her past returns to haunt her, Steve must race through wild country if he is to save the people he most cares about.

What I Thought: Loved it - draw in from page one. This got me my reading mojo back!

Friday, January 06, 2017

Book: Without Consent



Summary: Dr Anya Crichton, pathologist and forensic physician, is back on another chilling case that will stretch her forensic talents to the limit. This time, Anya is on the trail of a violent serial rapist. Suspicion immediately falls on the deviant Geoffrey Willard, recently released from prison after serving a full term for the brutal rape and murder of a fourteen year old girl. As Anya delves deeper into a myriad of forensic evidence, she begins to suspect that Willard is innocent. When two of the victims are later stabbed to death, a blood-smeared shirt holds the key to the truth. Only the killer knows that Anya has made a mistake. One that could prove fatal...show more


What I Thought: Wow - a great crime to start the year. Really enjoyed this. Will have to red her again.  

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

2016 books in review

Well I am a tad behind with everything at the minute including this post.

In 2016 I had a dismal reading year for me with only 46 books read (my mojo came and went). I barely read any of my bookgroup books either - actually a dismal 1!. So a quick breakdown:

Non-fiction - 2
Teen - 5
Rural Romance (I love this trash) - 33

So 2017 is here and I will aim again for 52 books - fingers crossed I get there - just so many other competing demands :)