Book-Review-The-Stockman’s-Secret

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The Stockman’s Secret

by

Mandy Magro

 

Mandy Magro’s The Stockman’s Secret, was my fifth of her books and as usual it is set in Queensland.

 

Juliette is the step-daughter of Little Heart’s minister. Unknown to step-Dad, Juliette and Joel have been seeing each other for some time and have become a couple because both had been the target of school bullies.

Juliette and Joel are attacked one night by these bullies and Joel cannot understand why Juliette wants to keep the attack a secret.

However, when one of the bullies confronts Joel and tells Joel what he will do to Juliette next time, it is more than Joel can bear.

In a bar room brawl, Joel punches Bully.  Juliette breaks up with Joel.  Joel packs his bags and takes a jackaroo’s job a Rosalee station.

 When Joel eventually decides it’s time to return to Little Heart, he finds things have changed quite a lot.  Bully 1, is a respected doctor and Juliette’s husband is trying to make his mark on local politics.  The main questions which need to be answered are:  Will bully 1 get his comeuppance?   Does Juliette still have feelings for Joel or is she happily married?   Will Joel’s family accept his return?

I enjoyed The Stockman’s Secret.

I rated

The Stockman’s Secret

 as a

three star read/audiobook

At the time of writing my review

other Goodreads readers had awarded

The Stockman’s Secret

an average of 4.08 stars

 from 159 ratings

 and 32 reviews

The Stockman’s Secret

can be purchased online at

Booktopia, Fishpond and Amazon

Book-Review-Flame-Tree-Hill

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Flame Tree Hill

by

Mandy Magro

 

Flame Tree Hill was my fourth Mandy Magro book and according to Google it was Ms Magro’s eleventh which explains why I thought it her best read/listen so far. 

In the past 18 months I have read several authors’ works and while a first book generally is okay storylines improve as an author’s body of work grows.

Flame Tree Hill dealt with some country issues I can relate to as a country boy.  However, the main issue and primary focus of Flame Tree Hill, is breast cancer.

Chapter one sees Kirsty Mitchell thinking of returning home to her family property, Flame Tree Hill, located just out of Cairns in Far North Queensland.  She is out on her first cattle muster when she has to scratch an itch and before we know there is a distressing diagnosis at hand.

From there we follow the highs and lows of an on again and off again romance and insecurities associated with breast cancer and its treatment.

I enjoyed Flame Tree Hill, however, I am not a fan of the topic.  Flame Tree Hill has a nice ending particularly as a revelation threatens to break the romance. 

 

I rated

Flame Tree Hill

 as a three star read/audiobook

At the time of writing my review

other Goodreads readers had awarded

Flame Tree Hill

an average of 4.13 stars

 from 248 ratings

 and 39 reviews

Flame Tree Hill

can be purchased online at

Booktopia, Fishpond and Amazon

Book-Review-Return-to-Rosalee-Station

Return To Rosalee Station

(Rosalee Station #2)

by

Mandy Magro

Return to Rosalee Station was my third book written by Mandy Magro and possibly the pick of the three.

Return to Rosalee Station is set about eight years after Matt and Sarah elope in Rosalee Station, and in the first twelve months after an accident claimed the life of their young daughter Eve.  Matt has taken to substance abuse leaving Sarah to battle her own demons, alone and lonely.  Both are considering the future of their marriage.  Will it survive the strain of an untimely death?

Eventually Matt decides to return to Rosalee Station (his parents property) on his own believing the isolation will help him in his ‘cold turkey’ bid to overcome his addiction.    While he is away Sarah returns to her parents or a few weeks.

Part of my review of Rosalee Station contained negative comments regarding Louise Crawford’s character voices.  Based on the fact that throughout my life jackaroos (station hands) have usually been in their twenties, I stated that many of the ‘boys’ sounded like old men.  Some of these characters are reprised in Return to Rosalee Station with two of them being aged at nearly seventy and in his sixties, if my memory is correct.   My apologies to Ms Crawford for my earlier comments; her character voices sounded more appropriate this time round.

Fortunately rhyming slang was minimal in Return To Rosalee Station and if I was listening properly there only seemed to be one outstanding passage where coarse language was over used. 

Overall, I found Return to Rosalee Station more believable than its predecessor Rosalee Station.  How, family members manage their grief after a death in the family is totally different for everyone, so much so that it can tear a family apart as Matt and Sarah feared.

 

I rated

Return To Rosalee Station

as a three star audiobook

At the time of writing my review

other Goodreads readers had awarded

Return To Rosalee Station

an average of 4.02 stars

from 123 ratings and 25 reviews

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Return To Rosalee Station

can be purchased online at

Booktopia, Fishpond and Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

Book-Review-Jacaranda

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Jacaranda

by

Mandy Magro

 

Jacaranda was my second Mandy Magro book and turned out to be very similar to Rosalee Station only this time round the story focused on Molly Jones and her daughter Rose.  Rose is the product of a one night stand when Molly was a drunken nineteen year old.  Six years later she is still trying to find Rose’s father while ignoring her long-time friend and mate, Heath.

Eventually Rose’s father, Mark, does return with a rodeo.  Molly and Mark meet up, get together and you will have to read the book to find out what happens.

Jacaranda is not (thankfully) littered with Australian slang to the overpowering extent of Rosalee Station.  The lack of Australian slang made Jacaranda much easier to listen to and earned it an extra star.  However, Jacaranda still is definitely of the ‘chick lit’ genre and does provide a breather from the crime genre which is my choice of reading material.

I would like to hear Ms Magro’s books co-narrated by Louise Crawford and a male narrator.  This would, hopefully, provide better male character voices.  One brief appearance by a male who I thought should have been at least ten years older than the boys actually sounds much younger.

Overall, a light read with some insight into Australia’s Outback.

I rated Jacaranda as a three star audiobook.

I rated

Jacaranda

Jacaranda

as a star audiobook.

*****

At the time of writing my review

other Goodreads readers had awarded

Jacaranda

an average of 4.14 stars

from 354 ratings

and 26 reviews.

Jacaranda

can be purchased online at

Booktopia, Fishpond and Amazon

Book-Review-Rosalee-Station

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Rosalee Station

(Rosalee Station #1)

by

Mandy Magro

 

Rosalee Station was my first Mandy Magro book and at times I thought it would be my last.  Set in Queensland and outback Rosalee Station it tells the story of Sarah Clarke, her friends and her love life.  I have read several other authors whose work was described as ‘chick lit’; however, Ms Magro has outdone any other (audio or written) chick lit novel.

There were times when I was shaking my head at the juvenile antics of the females in this book. Sarah was twenty-three, however both Sarah and her friends came across as early teens on many occasions.  Similarly several of the boys sounded like old men with their deep, drawling, voices.  This may have been narrator’s interpretation of the way this age group talks and behaves.  If so, it has done nothing to help me enjoy Rosalee Station.  If anything narrator Louise Crawford’s character voices played a large part in relegating Rosalee Station to two star status.

I am not on my own when I lament the overuse of rhyming slang, which at times, reminded me of primary school toilet humour.  I must be getting old!  It is unlikely that international readers would be able to interpret some of the included slang.  For me, the rot began within five minutes of the story when Sarah and boyfriend went down to the dam for a swim and a ‘quickie’ under a gum tree.  I really think Ms Magro did herself a disservice sinking to that level of writing.  As I said I must be getting old!

On that small plus side, and there is one, if you can overlook or enjoy that type of commentary (toilet humour – because it does get worse out at Rosalee Station), you may just enjoy Rosalee Station as a very light look at outback life through the eyes of these Jackaroos and Jillaroos.

I rated

Rosalee Station

Rosalee Station

as a two star read/audiobook

At the time of writing my review

other Goodreads readers had awarded

Rosalee Station

an average of 4.04 stars

from 336 ratings

and 29 reviews.

Rosalee Station

can be purchased online at

Booktopia, Fishpond and Amazon