Review

The Land Girls Victoria Purman

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Published: Harlequin Australia
Date: 15th April 2019
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

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Three women join the women’s land army in Australia during World War 2. The Land Girls introduces the reader to them and by the end of the book, each woman found a place in my heart and my very sincere admiration.

Flora is thirtyish and from Melbourne, she lives with her Dad, a brother who can’t go to war (Jack) and Frank who is fighting in the war overseas and they haven’t heard from him. A white feather given to her brother Jack on the street one day, decides Flora  to join the Land Girls – her first assignment  is picking grapes – hard work but she meets up with a delightful family. Slowly a relationship develops between Flora and Charles the owner of the farm but she is only there for a few weeks.

Lily is   18  from an Adelaide wealthy family, she has a sister a doctor working in the war overseas but Lily  hasn’t found her own niche. She finds it hard to even learn shorthand and typing. She is in love with David who is going off to war. Taking up her courage she too joins the land girls – unusual for some one from such a family. She is sent out to a place north of Adelaide to pick cherries

Betty is almost 18, friends all her life with Michael next door, she is an only child and she too decides to join Land Girls when Michael joins up in 1942 when he turns 18. She starts this life picking grapes in Mildura, many miles north of Melbourne, on the edge of the outback. She is among 20 other girls. It’s hard work and Betty is homesick. One Sunday she meets Flora who gives her words of encouragement, that really help.

I loved the Australian setting, the  realistic painting of what it was like to live in that time during war. The women who joined the land army worked hard, and it changed them in so many ways.  How worrying though for them for the loved ones who fought overseas and often when bad news came, so heart breaking.

Victoria Purman had me fully invested in each woman, each story so real. I loved the way the woman put their hands up and contributed. The way they supported each other and developed such important and memorable friendships.

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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It’s been a little cooler here! I even put on some woollen socks on Saturday because I was feeling cold! And then on Saturday it was so cold I lit a fire, and I wasn’t the only one! Autumn has arrived for us. And we ended daylight saving, which as you know sort of knocks you around for a little while.

This week I watched three movies – which I hardly ever do – all old ones but I enjoyed them nevertheless. The Enchanted April. The Descendants and Moana.

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

Still listening to this – well into it now…

And picked up from TBR from books bought at book fair year few years ago. From the Rose Harbor series.

Up next:

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Review

Only We Know Victoria Purman

Only We Know
Victoria Purman
Published: Harlequin Mira
Date: May 1st 2015
Format: e-ARC
Pages:320
Genre: Contemporary romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
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When Calla Maloney steps on the boat to Kangaroo Island, she’s filled with dread. Part of it is simple seasickness but the other part is pure trepidation. She’s not on a holiday but a mission: to track down her estranged brother, who she hasn’t seen since her family splintered two years before.

Firefighter Sam Hunter left the island twenty years ago and has made a habit out of staying as far away as he can get. But when his father’s illness forces him home, he finds himself playing bad cop to his dad and reluctant tour guide to a redhead with no sense of direction.

As Sam and Calla dig deeper into their long-buried family secrets, they discover that no one is an island and that opening up their hearts to love again might be the most dangerous thing they will ever do.

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Only We Know by Victoria Purman is set on the south coast of Australia, mainly on Kangaroo Island and a little in Adelaide. Victoria Purman books give me a real hankering to visit the south of Australia, she paints with words the beauty of such a rugged place.
Calla is on her way to visit Kangaroo Island to try and find her brother, when she meets Sam.  It isn’t in ideal circumstances, but something sparks between them and their journey towards each other begins.  Calla has been searching for her brother for over two years, there family has been broken apart by secrets and heart ache.
Sam has his own secrets and like Calla he has also experienced a relationship gone bad.  Neither of them are really ready for anything deep again.  Yet Sam is kind, thoughtful and compassionate.  Well mostly, until he has to deal with his father Charlie, who seems to be deteriorating into really poor health.  Can Calla help Sam see Charlie through different eyes?
I really enjoyed this beautifully written story.  The two main characters – both wounded – but working there way towards wholeness.  I was fully engaged by their stories and liked the fact that we were given both Sam and Calla’s point of view.  The minor characters added a delightful blend to the mix and highlighted the importance of family and friends.
Another wonderful book from this author.  I really love her south Australian settings, excellent writing and gentle exploration into characters’ lives.
4 stars
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Review

Our Kind of Love. Victoria Purman

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Our Kind of Love
Victoria Purman
Published: Harlequin MIRA
Date: 1st November 2014
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 352
Genre: Contemporary romance
Source: Publisher via NetGAlley
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Anna is… unexpected… unbelievable… unstoppable.

And unavailable.

Will what happened in Middle Point stay there?

Dr Anna Morelli rarely makes mistakes. But this one is big, bordering on huge. Somewhere between sunset and sunrise at the simple beachside wedding of two old friends, she’s cried in the ladies bathroom, danced to too many ABBA songs and survived the best, knock-your-socks-off one night stand in recorded history. Has she gone crazy? She’s supposed to be running from the disasters in her life, not creating more.

Award-winning journalist Joe Blake is back in Middle Point to lick his wounds after being dumped by his wife and sacked from his Sydney job on the same day. But after one incredible night with Anna, he finds he’ll need all his investigative skills to figure out why she won’t give in to their sizzling chemistry….

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Our Kind of Love is the third in the Boys of Summer trilogy by Victoria Purman.  It was a wonderful and very fitting end to the stories of three couples who find each other with the help of scenic Middle Point, South Australia and the match making ploys of certain women among them.
First we met Ry and Julia, then Dan and Lizzie. Now it is Joe’s turn, he is the newspaperman and brother of Lizzie.  He has returned to Middle Point after being made redundant and his marriage also breaking up.  He is drifting and hopefully in the process of re finding himself.  While doing that he meets Anna at Ry and Julia’s wedding and they share a very passionate one night stand.  Fast forward a few months and Joe and Anna meet up again and the sexual tension is still sizzling between them.
Anna too is just coming from the experience of a marriage break-up and a husband who has cheated on her.  She has suffered a number of miscarriages and would really love to have a child.  Her large Catholic Italian family feature large in her life – she has always been the ‘good girl’. Now there is a challenge for her, can she break that mould a little and become who she really is at heart.  I loved her big Italian family and the place family played in their lives.  It’s the exact opposite to what Joe has known, with only his sister Lizzie to count as family.  His father walked out on their little family when Joe was only three, it has had a far reaching effect on him.
Our Kind of Love is the story of how Joe and Anna grow as people and how they slowly find their way into a relationship that just may last with each other.  We also catch up with the other two couples and I loved how well integrated this was into the book.  At times we were given short points of view from them and of course the update on their lives was just …. perfect.
A beautiful setting, well written, characters I loved and cared about – and what I like always in a romance – that little epilogue that made my heart sing as I finished the book.  Delightful.  I really look forward to finding out what Victoria Purman is writing next.  
4 stars

Review

Nobody But Him. Victoria Purman

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Nobody But Him
Victoria Purman
Published: Harlequin Mira Australia
Date: 2013
Forma: Paperback
Pages: 300
Genre: Contemporary romance
Source:  Local public library.

At the age of eighteen, Julia Jones left her hometown — the small beachside town of Middle Point — with a head full of grand plans. Plans for an exciting life in a town that didn’t involve a main street with one pub or a particular boy named Ryan Blackburn.

But after fifteen years and a lifetime later, Julia’s forced to put her career and big-city life on hold when she returns home to finalise her mother’s estate. Which is exactly where she runs smack-bang into the town’s hero, Ry. As in Ryan Blackburn.

The sensible thing to do? Stay the hell away from him and head back to Melbourne as fast as her stilettos can carry her! But instead, Julia finds his offer of a helping hand and a hot body too delicious to refuse.Soon, Julia’s ignoring her better judgement and diving into an ‘I’ll think about it tomorrow’ fling with Ry. But what she doesn’t realise is that tomorrow has a way of sneaking up on you…and that saying goodbye to her home town — and to Ry — is so much harder the second time around.

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Nobody But Him is the first in the Summer Boys trilogy by Victoria Purman.  I absolutely loved this first book and am delighted that I can turn to the next one as it has just been published recently.
It is set in a beach community on the coastline of South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula.  The descriptions of this area are well drawn and the sea salt and spray can be felt!  Loved the touch of the whale and calf, and the delight that brings to be able to witness these huge animals so close by.
Ry and Julia spark of each other right from the beginning, they had known each other in their teen years, yet Julia had turned her back on Middle Point and Ry to go and seek ‘her fortune’ in Melbourne.  Now she has accomplished all she could have desired, and is back to close up her family home.  Once back she runs into the formidable Ryan Blackburn and so the fun begins.  There is never a dull moment with these two, and it is with delight the reader witnesses the “journey” that Julia makes to find what really matters in her life.  
Ryan is handsome, successful and just can’t get Julia out of his mind.  He missed out on chasing Julia the first time he left and those that love him – his mother and great friend Dan wonder if he is going to go after the woman he really wants and loves this time.  Dan is a very good friend, and this story sets up the next book which is going to be the story of Dan and Lizzie – Julia’s best friend and the manager of the local pub that Ry owns.
This book is very well written, entertaining and a load of fun to read.  I’m delighted to find a new to me author that I know I will enjoy from here on out.  Thanks to the Australian book bloggers who led me to this author!
4 stars
Boys of Summer
1.  Nobody But Him
2.  Someone Like you
3.