Books I Read in August
The Cattleman, The Baby and Me by Michelle Douglas
I just loved everything about this story - Sapphie bringing her baby nephew Harry to an outback cattle station in the hopes of finding his father, but finding and falling in love with his uncle instead. Sadly, Harry's father was dead. But Harry will grow up very happy with his maternal aunt and paternal uncle on the station. I loved Sapphie's conflict as she didn't think she'd be a good mother to Harry, and Harry was able to reignite Liam's dreams of becoming a father - what he lost when his ex-wife fell pregnant to another man. With the beautiful setting, picnics by the waterhole, and a magical jar of dirt, I read most of this book in the one sitting.
The Redemption of Rico d'Angelo by Michelle Douglas
I really enjoyed this sweet story by Michelle - read it on the plane to the RWA conference. Rico was one of those silly heroes who's denying himself a happy life due to a past mistake he blames himself for, so he needs Neen to give him a soft kick up the butt in order for him to realise he can be happy again. With Neen. I also really liked the Great Dane - he was such a big, silly, loveable dog.
The Desert Midwife by Fiona McArthur
A very authentic outback story - set on a station and in an aboriginal community near Ayers Rock. If you want to read an outback romance that features indigenous characters and culture, then this is that book. But Fiona doesn't over do it either and it is a very enjoyable read with a strong romance impeded by a case of amnesia. For anyone who loves rural and medical romance.
Claiming his One Night Child by Jackie Ashendon
This was the sequel to Jackie's July Modern, so I had to read it. It took me a while as it was the book I took with me to RWA Conference, so I read the beginning on the second half of the plane journey and then tried to find time to read while busy at conference. But it was a nice story with some of the fun tropes - enemies to lovers and accidental pregnancy - OOPS! She was supposed to kill the man - not have his baby!
The Greek's Billion-Dollar Baby by Clare Connolly
When we came back from morning tea in Rachel Bailey's The Deep Dive at conference, Clare had left us all a copy of this book. And a Tim Tam. But the best bit - it's an advanced edition because it's not out until the end of September. So I read this on the plane from Melbourne to Townsville - unfortunately I finished it with an hour still to go on my flight! But I couldn't put it down. I've tried reading Clare's books before, but they're written in first person and I just hadn't really got into them for that reason, I think. But what I loved most about this book is that while it's a Mills & Boon Modern, probably more of the story was told from the heroine's 3rd person POV and it didn't follow a distinctive his POV her POV pattern, like most M&B books do. I think that's what I liked most about this book. And, in 3rd person, I've discovered I really like Clare's voice and writing. Plus, the story was awesome and I loved the characters. Leonidas is a little overprotective when Hannah, his one night stand, turns up announcing she's pregnant. But that's understandable considering his wife and son were murdered - so he wants to protect Hannah and his unborn daughter at all costs. So while trapped on his beautiful Greek island, Hannah and Leonidas grow closer and eventually get over all the past emotional baggage on their way to finally getting together.
Just loved this book.
Bride Behind the Billion Dollar Veil by Clare Connolly
So, then I got the advanced copy of Bride Behind the Billion Dollar Veil, the sequel to the above. I'm really loving fake-relationship stories these days and enjoyed reading Thanos and Alice's story. Alice is a heroine who's very relatable and if Thanos asked me to marry him just for show - and to pay off the mountains of debt I was accumulating by caring for my sick mother - I'd marry him too. Look out for this book in November - it's great as well.
Meet Me In Venice by Barbara Hannay
I love Barbara's books, so I was very keen to read this one. I enjoyed this book because I'm a big supporter of big casts - and there were five main characters in this book as the family ventured off to Venice. Barbara painted the picture of Venice beautifully and I really felt like I was there. My favourite character was Bronte, although I connected the most with Ellie's story. A wonderful read if you like family-centered books filled with vibrant characters.
Reunited by a Baby Secret by Michelle Douglas
Another fantastic read by Michelle. I loved Ryan and Marianna's story as these two expectant parents got to know each other on a beautiful Italian vineyard and overcame their personal struggles to find love. It had everything I enjoy - vineyards, accidental pregnancy, and strong family ties. Just loved it.
On The Right Track by Penelope Janu
I grabbed this book from the shelf when I saw it in Big W after the RWA Conference, where it won the Ruby Award for best contemporary romance. Initially, the first person present tense threw me, but after the first chapter, I was hooked. Sadly, I seemed to grow less interested about halfway in, but I persisted and finished the book. It was a very nice romance between Golden and Tor and I was glad when they finally got together.
Books to Read in September
Matters of the Heart by Fiona Palmer
Pride & Prejudice retelling, need I say more? I'd have started already, but I was already in the middle of so many books!
Everything my library has by Michelle Douglas
I need to continue my binge reading. These books have just been fantastic! I have already started with First Comes Baby... and am loving it.
I'm just going to binge read all category romance for the next little while. These books are a guaranteed read as they're:
4. Are helping me form better stories myself.
Hopefully September's list will be full of shorter fantastic reads.
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