Brenda's Reviews > Billabong Bend

Billabong Bend by Jennifer Scoullar
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it was amazing
bookshelves: 2014-release, aussie-authors, romance, rural, arc, net-galley, own-read, read-on-kindle


As Nina Moore manoeuvred her runabout, Pelican, through the marshlands, camera in hand, she was startled by the boom, boom of nearby gunshots. Horrified at finding a dead black swan floating in the water near a tinny holding two semi-drunk men, her rage at the senseless slaughter made the men wish they hadn’t ventured into this section of the Bunyip River. For Nina, the rare animals and birds that lived in the marshland of Billabong Bend were precious; she had grown up at Red Gums which bordered Billabong Bend, and her desire to buy the property from her elderly neighbour and good friend Eva was one she was desperate to fulfill – her protection of the habitat was a heartfelt wish; joining the two properties was her future.

With a fancy dress ball on in Moree on New Year’s Eve, Nina and her friend Kate were dressed to kill – the masks which Kate had made hid their identities until the stroke of midnight. Most of the guests Nina found she recognised by their voices – but there was one man who sent tingles down her spine; who was he? The sudden shock of discovering that Ricardo Bonelli, her old flame from school had returned home from Italy and was staying with Max, his father, next door to Red Gums sent confusion and long-forgotten feelings swirling through her head.

With Nina’s parents living in town, having retired from Red Gums and leaving the property to Nina, she worked hard day in and day out to keep her land healthy and rich. She was a floodplains grazier, and had just begun growing organic pecans. The non-stop drought was causing problems not only for her, but for many of the families further down the river and also on outlying properties. Now that Ric was home, she wondered if it would be possible for them both to share the same dream…

But things weren’t as they seemed…there were buried secrets, lies and conspiracies lurking. Then tragedy tore their lives apart once more – what would happen to Billabong Bend? Would Ric and Nina ever see eye to eye – whatever would the future hold?

Aussie author Jennifer Scoullar has a winner with this one! The beautiful description of the bush, its habitat and the Bunyip River and its environs was spectacular. I felt like I was there, wading along the muddy river’s edge, spotting the rare birds and witnessing Nina’s excitement when she found a bird which hadn’t been seen in the area for many years. I loved Sophie and her passion, and Nina’s mother was a delight; her strength of character shone through. All up, a great book which I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend.

With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my copy to read and review.
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Reading Progress

March 8, 2014 – Shelved
March 8, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
March 8, 2014 – Shelved as: 2014-release
March 8, 2014 – Shelved as: aussie-authors
March 8, 2014 – Shelved as: romance
March 8, 2014 – Shelved as: rural
March 16, 2014 – Shelved as: arc
March 16, 2014 – Shelved as: net-galley
April 16, 2014 – Started Reading
April 17, 2014 – Shelved as: own-read
April 17, 2014 – Shelved as: read-on-kindle
April 17, 2014 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)

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message 1: by Kathryn (new)

Kathryn I lived in Moree for a couple of years - I might have to look out for this one since I lived for a little while in the area it's set! But I don't remember a Bunyip River anywhere nearby!!

Brenda Haha!! It might be fictional Kathryn;) But it's a great book!

message 3: by Kathryn (new)

Kathryn I like the sound of the references to actual features of the area, though - the pecans and the floodplains... And there are some rivers in and around Moree, so maybe Bunyip River is based on one of them!

Brenda Yes I would say so:) It's a beautifully descriptive book.

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