Sunday, November 04, 2018

Book: Alex Rider - Ark Angel



Summary: The sniper’s bullet nearly killed him. But Alex Rider managed to survive . . . just in time for more trouble to come his way. When kidnappers attempt to snatch a fellow patient from the exclusive hospital where Alex is recovering, he knows he has to stop him. But the boy he saves is no ordinary patient: He is the son of Nikolai Drevin, one of the richest men in the world. The eccentric billionaire has been targeted by Force Three, a group of eco-terrorists who claim his project Ark Angel—the first luxury hotel in outer space—is a danger to the environment. Soon Alex discovers that Force Three will stop at nothing to destroy Ark Angel, even if it means sending four hundred tons of molten glass and steel hurtling down to Earth and killing millions . . . unless Alex can stop them.


What I Thought: Again sucked in. Loving the series.

Book: Bro



Summary: What happens when you mix teenage boys, a fight club and ethnic rivalries? You get war. Romeo Makhlouf knows the rules. Stick with your own kind. Don’t dob on your mates or your enemies. Respect the family. But even unwritten rules are made for breaking. 


What I Thought: A nice teen "coming of age" story.

Book: High Country Hero



Summary: Having brokered a fragile peace with his demons at last, ex-Afghan War pilot Mitch Stuart isn't in the market for redemption. But when he steps outside his comfort zone to help a stranger in a country pub, he inadvertently opens the door to the ghosts of a woman and a white dog he thought he'd left behind him long ago.

Veterinary specialist Lennie O'Donnell and her beloved dog, Pesh, are taking a break from big-city life to help Lennie's grandfather sell his old-fashioned rural clinic. Lennie has dedicated her career to healing those unable to tell her what's wrong, but Mitch is a puzzle even she struggles to solve - or completely let go.

Meanwhile, back in Lennie's old home town, another man of mixed messages, her high school crush Benji Cooper, is all grown up and looking at Lennie the way she always dreamed he would. Can Mitch find the courage to let Lennie into his life? And with gorgeous, sunny, funny Benji waiting in the wings, is it a threshold Lennie wants to cross? There's also the matter of her grandparents' unexpectedly fractured marriage to mend, and Lennie's growing suspicion there might be more to the sale of her grandfather's clinic than meets the eye.


What I Thought: Enjoyed revisiting some of these characters and places. Nice to read a NZ rural romance.

Book: The 12 Daves of Christmas




Summary: Abby Solomon may write happy–ever–afters for a living, but doesn't believe she'll have her own. But then a surprise visit from her grandmother's ghost sets her off on a journey she'll never forget. Grandma Charlotte wants to find her first love, Dave, who she mistakenly thought had died in World War II. A quick trawl through the Yellow Pages yields a list of twelve possibilities, and Abby and Charlotte set off on a Christmas road trip – twelve Daves over twelve days along the sun–drenched east coast of Australia.
With just over a week to make the meeting happen, Abby has to meet a dozen Daves – some sweet, some quirky, some downright dangerous – while trying to honour her book deadline and enduring the awkward challenges of having a ghost as a travelling companion.
But when she comes across a young doctor who looks like the hero in one of her novels, Abby has the chance to discover that true love transcends time and space, and that happy endings aren't only to be found between the pages of a book.


What I Thought: Actually enjoyed this cheeky Christmas book!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Book: Home for Christmas



Summary: What began as an impersonal-but-cheerful holiday gift for a soldier far from home becomes so much more...Sergeant Tate McAuliffe, stationed in Afghanistan, opens his Christmas care package from Australia and is stunned by both its contents and the sender. Fun-loving Christmas tree designer Layla Preston is a breath of fresh air for loner Tate. Although they've never met, their email friendship quickly develops and their feelings for each other deepen. But Layla knows the heartache that loving a soldier can bring and when Tate is injured, her deep-seated fear drives them apart. With their relationship in tatters, can Layla and Tate work through their differences, so Layla can welcome Tate home for Christmas?


What I Thought: A different concept so I enjoyed that and got sucked in!

Book: Someone like you



Summary: When bestselling author, twenty-nine year old Hayley Stevens, walks in on her husband, Paul, and her best friend in bed together, she knows her life will never be the same again. One year later, Hayley stowed her last bag in her much-loved Audi Coupe and said goodbye to the city. She was excited to be heading west to Lochway, a small colonial village sitting on the beautiful Macdonald River. Wanting peace and quiet, Hayley had impulsively bought a cosy sandstone cottage there surrounded by lush rose gardens, with a small overseer's cottage - ideal for a writer's retreat.

What she didn't expect was the almost immediate 'gift' of a very noisy donkey named Errol. Nor did Hayley expect to meet her handsome new neighbour, Luke Mason, when she was covered in mud trying to drag Errol out of Luke's dam. The strange thing was though that Luke seemed very familiar to her. As Hayley slowly gains acceptance into her small community and starts writing again she becomes almost afraid of the inexplicable visions she sees. What does it all mean? And why does Luke refuse to listen to her?


What I Thought: I enjoy these books. Simple and not too deep. The right mix of escapism!

Book: Under Christmas Stars



Summary: Freya George was the local teacher for the rural community of Reedy Creek until a truck ploughed into her school commendation before Christmas. Drew Macgregor offered for Freya to stay at his home until repairs can be made on the Schoolhouse. Drew and Freya did not believe that staying at Drew Macgregor home would affect their lives so much...


What I Thought: Nice to head back to the same town. Love characters throughout multiple books.

Book: A Country Mile



Summary: When Sophie Copinni's love life turns sour, a trip to her hometown in Far North Queensland is the perfect time for her to take stock of her future. There, two weeks before she turns thirty, she finds a bucket list from her teenage years. Most of the challenges are fun, although one thing on the list scares the hell out of her: she is to reveal a long–held family secret – the very reason she ran away eight years ago.
A road trip home is Dylan Stone's chance to escape the shady operations he has uncovered at the Sydney tattoo parlour he runs. Surrounded by the landscape and loved ones he's missed so fiercely, Dylan starts to think that maybe it's time to make his homecoming permanent. But there is still the unresolved matter of Sophie – the woman who broke his heart and skipped town so long ago.
Dylan and Sophie try to keep their distance but they can't deny the intense chemistry between them. But if Sophie tackles the scariest challenge on her list, will it push Dylan away forever? And will her family ever be the same again?


What I Thought: These are always light reads - enjoyable.

Book: Alex Rider - Scorpia



Summary: After a revelation with Yassen Gregorovich, Alex sets off with his friend Tom Harris in Venice to track down the mysterious organization known only to Alex as Scorpia. A chance encounter with one of the top agents of Scorpia reveals a sinister plot to change all of London. Now, Alex must return to his old life in MI6 and risk his life to save thousands of children. Will he stay with MI6, who have betrayed him, or join Scorpia and get his revenge?


What I Thought: I enjoyed how this explored a darker side.

Book: Mackenzie Crossing



Summary: It's 1939, and Neville, escaping an unhappy marriage and his memories of the Great War, finds himself in Mackenzie Crossing on the day of the terrible Black Friday bushfires. He meets the beautiful Georgie Mackenzie and in an instant knows that she is the subject he has been looking for. As the heat intensifies, Georgie and Pom begin to wonder if they have a future together; but first, they must survive the blaze.

Almost sixty years later, Sky Stewart returns to the area in search of her grandfather. Did he survive the Black Friday bushfires? Who is the exotic woman in the photograph she found? But when she arrives in Elysian, the closest town to where Mackenzie Crossing used to be, she finds more of her hidden past than she bargained for. A more recent past which she would prefer stayed forgotten...

What I Thought: Ooh I enjoyed this - a new author added to the list! 

Book: Alex Rider - Eagle Strike



Summary: Reluctant MI6 agent Alex Rider is relaxing in the south of France until a sudden, ruthless attack on his hosts plunges him back into a world of violence and mystery - and this time, MI6 don't want to know. Alex is determined to track down his friends' attackers, even if he must do it alone. But it's a path that leads to a long-buried secret - and a discovery more terrible than anything he could have imagined.


What I Thought: Another good read. Loving the series.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Book: The Last McAdam



Summary: What Tess hasn't counted on is coming up against the station's handsome and charismatic head stockman, Nate McAdam, whose family owned the property for generations...
Passed down through the same family for over a century, the remote sheep and cattle station of Broken Creek has recently been taken over by global agribusiness company Carnarvon Holdings. Now Carnarvon has sent its best troubleshooting manager, Tess Drummond, to turn the property's failing fortunes around fast.
When Tess arrives to take the reins of Broken Creek she's faced with a couple of nasty surprises. For starters, her head stockman, Nate McAdam, happens to be the same gorgeous stranger she hooked up with and ran out on a few weeks before.
As if that wasn't bad enough, Nate was supposed to inherit Broken Creek until his stepfather ran it into the ground. Now the last McAdam on the station leads a team of men whose bonds have been forged through hell and high water and whose mission is to see off Carnarvon and Tess so he can take his rightful place.
A genius with farm work and women but a disaster in the office, Nate is everything Tess believes a farmer shouldn't be. Determined not to give in to her growing attraction to him, Tess sets out to do her job, but she soon finds herself caught up in the battle of her career.


What I Thought: I really enjoyed this one. Nice to have a NZ rural romance for a change.

Book: Chrissy and the Burroughs Boy



Summary: Chrissy James has only been home in small-town Levenham a few weeks when her teenage crush plays hero and saves her from an aggressive drunk. Seven years ago, Nick Burroughs was the school hottie while she was the overweight girl with braces, bad hair, and an unrequited obsession with the sports star every girl in school wanted. Her failed efforts to attract Nick's attention still burn.
Chrissy sure has his attention now, but she's older, smarter and focused on settling into her new dream job as wine marketer. No matter how sexy he's grown, or how keen his interest, Nick will need to do a lot more than see off a drunk if he wants to win her over.
But Chrissy doesn't count on the determination of a Burroughs boy in love. Nick will do anything to recapture Chrissy's heart, even if it means acting the romantic fool and embarrassing himself in the process.
Will Nick's efforts to make amends for the past backfire or will Chrissy's career thwart everything? Grab this cute small-town romance and find out.

What I Thought: A nice little novella here. Very sweet. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Book: Whitsunday Dawn



Summary: When Olivia Sheridan arrives in the Whitsundays as spokesperson for big mining company Sheridan Corp, it should be a straightforward presentation to the town about their proposed project. But when a handsome local fisherman shows her what ecological impact the proposal will have, Olivia is forced to question her father's motives for the project.
Struggling with newly divided loyalties, Olivia is thrown further into turmoil when she is mistaken for a woman who disappeared more than sixty years before. When it becomes clear that Captain Jay is also keeping secrets, Olivia realises that there is more to these sunshine–soaked islands than she ever expected.
Seeking to uncover the truth, Olivia is drawn into a dangerous game where powerful businessmen will stop at nothing to ensure their plan goes ahead, even if that means eliminating her…




What I Thought: I've just been up near here so the images were very vivid in my mind. A great story. Loved the chop and change of years/character perspectives.

Book: The Last of the Bonegilla Girls


Summary: Their friendship transcends nationality and background, but can it overcome the horrors of the past? A post-Second World War story of strong female ties and family, secrets and lies, set in the multicultural Australia of the fifties. Can the Bonegilla girls defeat their past? Or will it come to claim them?
1954: When sixteen–year–old Hungarian Elizabeta arrives in Australia with her family, she is hoping to escape the hopelessness of life as a refugee in post–war Germany. Her first stop is the Bonegilla Migrant Camp on the banks of the Murray in rural Victoria, a temporary home for thousands of new arrivals, all looking for work and a better life. There, Elizabeta becomes firm friends with the feisty Greek Vasiliki; quiet Italian Iliana; and the adventurous Frances, the daughter of the camp's director.
In this vibrant and growing country, the Bonegilla girls rush together towards a life that seems full of promise, even as they cope with the legacy of war, the oppressive nature of family tradition and ever–present sorrow. So when a ghost from the past reaches out for Elizabeta and threatens to pull her back into the shadows, there is nothing that her friends wouldn't do to keep her safe. But secrets have a way of making themselves known and lies have a way of changing everything they touch...

What I Thought: Loved it! Having visited Bonegilla a few years back with the kids and hubby and learning more from my father in-law who stayed here the book was just wonderful.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Book: The Art of Keeping Secrets



Summary:  They’ve been best friends since their sons started high school together, and Felicity, Emma and Neve share everything … or so they thought. But Flick’s seemingly perfect marriage hides a shocking secret which, with one word, threatens to destroy her and her family’s happiness. Emma is in denial about a potential custody battle, her financial constraints, the exhaustion she can’t seem to shake off and the inappropriate feelings she has for her boss. And single mum Neve is harbouring a secret of her own; a secret that might forever damage her close-knit relationship with her son.  When the tight hold they have each kept on their secrets for years begins to slip, they must face the truth. Even if that truth has the power to hurt the ones they love, and each other.
Perhaps some secrets weren’t made to be kept.


What I Thought: An enjoyable read. Lots of issues explored.

Book: Alex Rider - Skeleton Key



Summary: Alex Rider has been through a lot for his fourteen years. He's been shot at by international terrorists, chased down a mountainside on a makeshift snowboard, and has stood face-to-face with pure evil. Twice, young Alex has managed to save the world. And twice, he has almost been killed doing it. But now Alex faces something even more dangerous. The desperation of a man who has lost everything he cared for: his country and his only son. A man who just happens to have a nuclear weapon and a serious grudge against the free world. To see his beloved Russia once again be a dominant power, he will stop at nothing. Unless Alex can stop him first... Uniting forces with America's own CIA for the first time, teen spy Alex Rider battles terror from the sun-baked beaches of Miami all the way to the barren ice fields of northernmost Russia. Come along for the thrilling ride of a lifetime.


What I Thought: Again I was sucked in. Eleven in the series so far so looking forward to reading the rest.

Book: Alex Rider - Point Blanc



Summary: Investigations into the "accidental" deaths of two of the world's most powerful men have revealed just one link: both had a son attending Point Blanc Academy - an exclusive school for rebellious rich kids, run by the sinister Dr Grief and set high on an isolated mountain peak in the French Alps. Armed only with a false ID and a new collection of brilliantly disguised gadgets, Alex must infiltrate the academy as a pupil and establish the truth about what is really happening there.


What I Thought: Another great book - again sucked in!

Book: Alex Rider - Stormbreaker



Summary: They told him his uncle died in an accident. He wasn't wearing his seatbelt, they said. But when fourteen-year-old Alex finds his uncle's windshield riddled with bullet holes, he knows it was no accident. What he doesn't know yet is that his uncle was killed while on a top-secret mission. But he is about to, and once he does, there is no turning back. Finding himself in the middle of terrorists, Alex must outsmart the people who want him dead. The government has given him the technology, but only he can provide the courage. Should he fail, every child in England will be murdered in cold blood.


What I Thought: Loved it! Hooked. What a great read for teens who love spys and adventures.

Sunday, September 02, 2018

Book: Mother's Day



Summary: Burra District Hospital's maternity unit is under threat and will close for births unless a new obstetrician can be found. Midwife Noni Frost needs a miracle.
A single mum, Noni lives with her young son, Harley, and her Aunt Win, a free spirit and the beating heart of Burra Guest House. Noni's world is disrupted when Iain McCloud and his pregnant teenage daughter Jacinta move into the guesthouse to await the birth of her baby.
There's instant chemistry between Iain and Noni, although he has no plans to stay on in town. But when Jacinta shares explosive family secrets with Noni and an unexpected crisis occurs, everyone's lives come crashing down around them.
Set among the white gum trees and flowing waters of the NSW northern rivers, this is a heartfelt and dramatic story about new babies, new friends and new loves, which shows that when strong women come together in a time of crisis, they can overcome even the greatest odds.


What I Thought: Loved this one - sucked in from the beginning and stayed up way too late at night to finish!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Book: Fool's Gold



Summary: Detective Dave Burrows' first posting to the far west goldfields town of Barrabine in 1997 holds everything he's looking for, but Melinda, his wife of two weeks, is devastated at leaving behind her family, friends and career. More comfortable in heels than RM Williams, Melinda walked away from her much-loved job in the city as a paediatric nurse to follow Dave into the bush.

Dave settles in easily to the plain-speaking toughness of his new town, determined to do well, knowing that Barrabine could be his stepping stone into the elite stock squad. But will his marriage last the distance? As Dave investigates reports of mysterious late-night trespassing, a missing person, and guns being drawn on strangers, a local prospector phones in with horrific news that could hold the key to everything.


What I Thought: It was ok but seemed really backwards. I prefer her modern day ones and thought this could have been much better written. It was more like "wild west" than the late 1990's.





Book: Promises of Hunters Ridge



Summary: Mia Morgan doesn’t let anything get to her. After freeing herself from an obsessive boss and saving loved ones from a serial killer, she feels like she can handle anything life throws at her. But now that killer – a deranged hunter who preys on women for sport – is coming for her. And if she runs, others will pay the price. As if that’s not enough, Ben Bowden, the brilliant detective who has made her life hell for the past four years, has some insane plan to protect her. If she collaborates with him, Mia might just have to acknowledge her true feelings. But if she keeps him out, will she let the hunter win?Ben Bowden is sick of finding dead bodies. If being the lead detective on the biggest case in the country didn’t come with enough pressure, now the psychopath Ben is chasing has Mia Morgan in his sights. And Mia doesn’t want his help. She hasn’t forgiven him for the past, and is being less than cooperative with his investigation. Protecting her is a challenge, and the sparks that fly whenever they’re together aren’t helping. But he has to make her trust him – somehow – because she has a plan that terrifies him to the bone.
Can he convince her to work with him? Or will she risk everything to single-handedly turn the hunter into the hunted?


What I Thought: It dragged on a bit for me so I am pleased this is the final in the series. Still enjoyable though.