Meet Me in Venice

Meet Me in Venice

Barbara Hannay

Meet Me in Venice by Barbara Hannay

Reviewed by Helen

This is a delightfully beautiful story, with an awesome setting I have never been to Venice but I feel as if I have had a trip there, now that I have been with the Benetto family. The old saying is so true that no matter how old your children are a mother never stop worrying about them, when the Benetto family lose a much loved husband and father, Daisy wife and mother decides that she would like all of her family to have a holiday together in the city that their beloved father Leo was born in, Venice. I do hope that you will join the family in their trip that shows the ups and downs of a family and uncover a secret that could rock the family.

When Daisy gets her three children together there is sure to be some highs and lows and as she discovers something that could cause some major problems just before they leave Daisy is a little apprehensive but very much looking forward to the trip, she loved her husband dearly and misses him terribly, but she also needs to uncover the truth about his secret.

Eldest son Marc and his wife Bronte live in Silicon Valley California and when they arrive in Venice everyone can see that there are problems in their marriage, will this trip pull them together or tear them apart.

Annie lives in London doing everything she can to become an actor, the life that she has wanted since she was a small child, but things are tough on the acting scene in London and Annie is struggling with what she wants to do.

Ellie has decided to have a gap year after her last year in high school and is not sure what she really wants to do, but being with her older siblings who are successful she is feeling pressured a little.

When a family comes together for a holiday there is always sure to be a few problems no matter how much they care for each other and these three children love and worry about their mother and all of them are doing their best to make this trip work, but in the end a mother knows and together they work through their issues with love and caring and when the secret really tests them they stick together. I truly loved this story from page one and I highly recommend it, thank you MS Hannay you really bought this family to life on the pages the emotions and feelings are so real.

5 stars


Expected publication: August 6th 2019 by Penguin Random House Australia

The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle

The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle

Sophie Green

The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle by Sophie Green

Reviewed by Helen

I am not sure where to start with this book, I can tell you how fabulous it is and how much I loved it and how well this one is written and that MS Green has bought together four strangers who over the seasons of a couple of years swim and become the best of friends who are there for each other no matter what, it is set in the beautiful beachside suburb of Shelly Bay and that it really is a must read.

Theresa is married to Andrew they have two children and Theresa has decided that she wants to lose a bit of weight and get fit and seeing as they are close to the beach and she loves swimming an early morning swim will also give her some much need time to herself.

Marie is widowed and in her sixties and has swam every morning no matter what the season for decades, it is something that she has always loved.

Leanne is single and in her twenties a nurse and very much a loner and there are reasons for that, but she has been having swimming lessons and decides that trying to swim in the ocean is something that she really wants to do.

Elaine is married to a doctor, but has moved from England to Australia and left her adult sons behind and is trying very hard to fit in and as swimming was something she did when she was young taking it up again is what she does.

These four woman meet by chance at Shelly Bay and then every morning just on dawn they swim through different weather and become fast friends, they are all from different backgrounds and have different personalities, they learn to open up to each other, there is heartbreak and happiness through some very difficult situations, but above all they cherish their time together and the bond and companionship that grows and the love they have for each other.

I cried and I smiled throughout this book, and still tear up thinking about it even though I finished it yesterday, it really will be a book that stays with me for a long time to come. We all need our best friends those people that are there to laugh with and cry with and help whatever the problem is, I am lucky enough to have those and I hope that you pick this book up and love it as much as I did.

5 stars


Published July 23rd 2019 by Hachette Australia

The Desert Midwife

The Desert Midwife

Fiona McArthur

The Desert Midwife by Fiona McArthur

Reviewed by Helen

Oh there were tears and heart-ache and then joy, pure joy and happiness that brought a huge sigh and smile, MS McArthur really knows how to pull a reader in with her real life characters, people that become friends, this story had the emotions flowing as we get to know desert midwife Ava and emergency doctor Zac and a cast of amazing characters that show strength, I hope you pick this book up because it is a must read.

Ava May has been born an bred in the outback desert, she comes from a family of strong woman and men, her mother and grandmother are nurses and Ava follows in their footsteps but becoming a midwife, she is very close to the indigenous people and their ways. When Ava is coming back from a flight from Sydney she meets Zac and there is no stopping the sensual feelings that leap between them and an affair begins but an accident stops things in their tracks.

Zac Logan is escaping to the outback for a while to get his head back in the right space after a tragedy has changed his life, looking or finding love is not on the cards for this Sydney man, but meeting Ava on the flight changes everything for him, he falls in love, who would have thought that love at first sight does happen not Zac, but when the accident happens with shattering outcome he struggles. Ava and her family ask him to stay and recuperate at the cattle station and he goes and becomes very close to this wonderful family, and helps with their problems.

The setting is amazing, the writing just beautiful, MS McArthur has shown us the struggles of the land and what drought does to families, the births in the outback and the needs of the indigenous people. Getting to know Ava's family her struggling brother Jock and his pregnant wife Hana, her mother Stella and grandmother Mim was fabulous, and of course Ava and Zac wow what a journey they have to a beautiful HEA the strength and courage shown had me cheering them on. This one is going to stay with me for a long time to come, thank you for another keeper, this is one that I highly recommend.

5 stars


Expected publication: July 16th 2019 by Penguin Random House Australia

Devil's Lair

Devil's Lair

Sarah Barrie

Devil's Lair by Sarah Barrie

Reviewed by Helen

This story is absolutely fabulous, edge of your seat suspense, fabulous setting and a romance that just made me feel so good with everything else that is going on in the story, fast paced and a must read, this is the second book in this series and we are back in Tasmania, time to make yourself comfortable because you will not want to put this one down until you find out all of the details.

Callie Jones is involved with the death of her husband Dale on a winery in th Hunter Valley, there had been a gruesome death of a woman and what happened next changed Callie’s life, she is encouraged to move to Tasmania by her friend and manager of the winery Paisley, she ends up on Paisley’s family home an old homestead that has a dark past and it is not long before Callie is having strange dreams. Callie meets Conner Atherton who with his family run the nearby guesthouse Callie ends up helping with their garden and feelings for Conner grow even though it is the last thing that Callie wanted.

Conner and his family have been through a lot in the past and when strange things start happening at their lodge Conner worries big time that evil is around, meeting the new neighbor Callie sets his blood afire after the last relationship turned so bad but he is sure Callie is very different. Danger is arriving and it appears that Callie is in danger and Conner is determined to keep her safe.

I cannot recommend this book enough it has everything that a romantic suspense reader wants in a story it is a psychological thriller with dark magic and secrets that have been kept for many years, and when it all comes to a thrilling end OMG I never guessed how it would all pan out, MS Barrie you have done it again what a fantastic story I savoured every word, I didn’t want to put it down. I loved Conner and Callie they had both been through so much but came through strong and in love, thank you, I hope I have given this book justice, I loved it.

5 stars


Published June 17th 2019 by HarperCollins

Merindah Park

Merindah Park

Merindah Park #1

Renee Dahlia

Merindah Park by Renée Dahlia

Reviewed by Helen

This is a rural romance set in Victoria Australia and in Japan, Merindah Park is a race horse stud run by John Bassett and his siblings a brother and two sisters, this is John’s story his journey to a HEA with a beautiful Japanese Veterinarian is a sensual and moving story that is sure to keep you turning the pages.

John has set off to Japan to buy a new race horse for the stud Tsuyoi Red, he worries that it is the right thing to do as for the last five years he truly has struggled to keep the park going and make ends meet, but this should be a chance to really help. When he arrives he meets his old friend and his sister Toshiko and there is an instant pull between the two, she is the vet at their stud and beautiful and soon they are conversing like old friends and getting closer.

Toshiko is bound by honour as is the custom in Japan, she has done everything to please her family, she become a good vet and the family stud was left to her younger brother and now she must honour her parents wishes and become a bride to a neighbor, but first she will travel to Australia with John and the horses he has purchased and here in Australia she learns to be more open and stand up for herself and fall in love.

MS Dahlia knows her horse racing information this is a very well written story, there are many emotions flying from the pages and when John discovers Toshiko’s other happiness besides being a vet and horses it threatens to pull them apart, but love prevails and they have the best HEA. I really did thoroughly enjoy this story I learnt lots of interesting things about horse racing and of course there was the beautiful romance and I do look forward to seeing the Bassett siblings get their HEA.

4 stars


Published April 20th 2019 by Escape Publishing

Shadows Over Wongan Creek

Shadows Over Wongan Creek

Wongan Creek #3

Juanita Kees

Shadows Over Wongan Creek by Juanita Kees

Reviewed by Helen

I loved being back in Wongan Creek, this town and the people who live there have so much love and caring they have been through some tough times but are always there to help and support, this time we meet Fenella and Kieran, can two troubled teenagers who moved to the town together years before finally get their HEA? Make yourself comfortable for this fabulous story.

Fenella Waterman is running the Cranky Lizard winery with the woman that she calls Mum, Fen has been through a lot in her life, she was a very troubled teenager when she arrived in Wongan Creek and was taken in by Liv and Muzz all those years ago, now settled and doing well, that was until a bad relationship ends badly and with danger and the need to finally get the repressed memories out in the open. When her best friend Kieran returns to town emotions are running high.

Kieran Murphy has returned to Wongan Creek a widower and single dad, to a little boy Liam who has been through so much already and he is hoping that this town will help heal his little boy, he takes on a job at the winery as manager and his feelings for Fen are as strong as they ever were, as they were growing up together before he married Diane and moved away, but will being close to Fen put Liam in danger, but there is no way he can leave Fen.

This is a page turner that will have you on the edge of your seat as Fen works at getting her memory back and keeping everyone safe from the outlawed gang and the danger they bring to town all because Fen fell for the wrong person, and a lot from the past is bought out. It is a fast paced story that is moving and emotional, the support and love that Kieran and Fen show had me cheering them on, this is such a great story one that I highly recommend, thank you MS Kees I loved it.

5 stars


Published March 1st 2019 by Escape Publishing

Emily Gone

Emily Gone

Bette Lee Crosby

Emily, Gone by Bette Lee Crosby

Reviewed by Helen

Another great read by this author, her stories are compelling and moving, characters that are very likable and her stories pull me in to the situations that are going on, this time we are in the south of America, it starts in 1971 with the kidnapping of a six month old baby girl Emily and what the parents and the child go through a captivating page turner.

There is a music festival in the town of Hesterville Georgia and Rachel and George Dixon are having a hard time firstly getting their baby Emily to sleep and getting some themselves, finally all three fall into a deep sleep, but when Rachel awakes in the morning her daughter’s crib is empty, the grief is overwhelming it is so hard to explain the pain they felt.

Vicki and her partner Murph are having a great time at the music festival high on music and marijuana, but when it is time to leave Vicki is really hungry and insists that he stop at a farm house even though it is the middle of the night so as she can try to get food, but when she walks into the house and sees the baby bottle on the sink her heart breaks all over again for the child she had lost not long before and takes this beautiful little girl with her, changing a lot of lives.

This was a very moving story, it shows the strength that people can pull from within as they struggle with everyday life, it shows what family and friends will do for each other and it shows how people can forgive and show compassion. I did very much enjoy this story, years of searching comes to and end and I am sure that fate played a big part, this is a story that I highly recommend.

5 stars


Published April 30th 2019 by Lake Union Publishing