Angela Ranger was at her wit’s end – her credit card was maxed out and the second one she had taken out was almost at its limit as well. Raising h4.5★s
Angela Ranger was at her wit’s end – her credit card was maxed out and the second one she had taken out was almost at its limit as well. Raising her four year old daughter Claudia by herself, plus trying to work full time was taking it out of her. When her dad, who owned Ranger Transport, asked her to take over a month long contract moving freight between the little town of Munirilla and Adelaide as the regular driver was injured, she initially said she couldn’t. But on reflection she realized the money would help reduce her debts, plus she’d always loved the freedom of driving the big rigs. Little Claudia was excited about the ‘venture as well…
That first trip driving Big Red from Melbourne (her home city) to Munirilla went well, but both Angela and Claudia were happy to arrive at the depot. The shock on the faces of the men she immediately encountered made her realize that her father hadn’t told anyone she was female. And so began the old school prejudice of a female in a male role. With the dingy little flat she was told was her accommodation for the next month looking less than inviting, Angela began to wonder at the wisdom of her decision.
When Angela met Coop he was picking up some parts for his boss. Coop was farm manager on a property out of town and had taken over completely while his boss, Alice, went to Adelaide for hospital treatment. He knew she’d be unable to return for some time so had promised Alice he would care for the property, including the sheep that were almost ready to lamb.
As both Angela and Coop faced their own problems - Angela with the battle of keeping the business running against all odds as well as family problems; Coop with strange occurrences happening at the farm – they were drawn together. But their problems continued to escalate – what would be the outcome for them both?
I thoroughly enjoyed Queen of the Road which is Aussie author Tricia Stringer’s debut novel. Angela was a little annoying at times – I felt she needed a good talking to! Claudia was adorable and occasionally cantankerous (which is usual for a four year old!) and Coop was…well, Coop! An excellent rural romance which I have no hesitation in recommending highly. ...more
Widow Kate Ashley and her nine year old son Thomas lived a happy and reasonably contented life in Barton, Yorkshire; with her sister Suzanne, husbandWidow Kate Ashley and her nine year old son Thomas lived a happy and reasonably contented life in Barton, Yorkshire; with her sister Suzanne, husband William and their brood of children close by, Kate had family enough around her. But when she received a summons from Tom’s great grandfather, Sir Frances Thornton to his estate of 'Seven Ways', she had no idea what would be the right thing to do. The Thornton and Ashley families had been estranged for thirty years – Kate had no desire to meet the old man who wanted to “clear his conscience” before he passed away – but Tom, she found, wanted to meet his great grandfather.
Kate’s meeting of Sir Frances and Nell, his granddaughter was a smooth one; but 'Seven Ways' was in dire straits. The civil war had taken its toll with Nell’s husband Giles and brother Jonathan who were both loyal to King Charles II and away at war. The fortunes of the estate had turned – the once beautiful old home was gradually falling to ruin. But when Kate discovered Sir Frances’ intention, she was shocked. Her future was about to change in more ways than one…
When Jonathan arrived home for a secretive and brief visit to his ailing grandfather, his meeting of Kate and young Tom gave him pause. Jonathan’s life had been one of intense danger – he had no fear of death and had even courted it. But now he wondered; could he put his past behind him? The dreadful secrets of a past that needed to be faced; with a price on his head, he felt he continued to put loved ones in danger…
The deadly Battle of Worcester was one of great carnage to both sides – but Kate’s determination to keep 'Seven Ways' going, along with her worry about the safety of Jonathan and Giles had her doing more than she ever had before. There was evil close to Kate; an evil she was unaware of – would she be safe? Would her future be secure?
Aussie author Alison Stuart is an extremely talented writer of historical fiction. By the Sword was originally published in 2010 and this edition is a "polished up" republication. Therefore it is a reread for me, but I’ve loved it as much, if not more, than I did the first time. Skilfully told, the historical facts are authentic. In the author’s words at the end of the book, and in part; “The battle of Worcester is among the last battles ever fought on English soil and the reminders of that time are still very much to be found around that lovely city.” and “’Seven Ways’ itself bears very close resemblance both in appearance and location to Harvington Hall near Kidderminster in Worcestershire, a place that held a special significance to my grandfather, who took great pleasure in showing me all the priest holes – including the one in the study that is much as described.”
I loved By the Sword and have no hesitation in recommending it highly.
With thanks to NetGalley and the author for my copy to read and review. ...more
Seventeen year old Eve Shepard’s awakening was slow and torturous – the terror at finding herself trapped in what she perceived as a shallow grave4.5★s
Seventeen year old Eve Shepard’s awakening was slow and torturous – the terror at finding herself trapped in what she perceived as a shallow grave but not knowing how she got there caused her to panic. The lack of oxygen meant she had to dig her way out quickly – but was she even breathing? Her awareness came suddenly – she didn’t need air; she had no pulse; no heartbeat – what on earth had happened to her?
Along with escape came a smattering of memories – the most important being that she and her younger sister Lyssa had been kidnapped. Evie had to find Lyssa; had to rescue her – and she had to have revenge on the evil people who kidnapped them and all the others…
Coming across Ethan as Evie made her escape – her mind filled with memories and dark thoughts – meant they could help one another. Ethan was working on a case which seemed to coincide – the fact that he knew who she was shocked her. As they moved forward the danger was intense – Evie’s new abilities were something she needed to come to terms with; but they helped her defeat the attackers. Her senses were such that she could hear and smell much more than she had been able to; her strength was incredible. She was a Vengador and her rage was building…
I thoroughly enjoyed Awakenings by author J.E. Shannon – a young adult/paranormal novel with an intriguing plot, there was also a mix of mystery, suspense and a light smattering of romance. Filled with fast paced action, it’s one I have no hesitation in recommending for lovers of Speculative Fiction. ...more