REVIEW: Bluey Book Series (Part One)

Bluey keeps going from strength to strength with their recent released board book collection. Released in print for the first time in November 2019, the creators of the Bluey books have proven that they are not messing around with this much-loved series. After a long wait for merchandise to release, Penguin Random House Australia have released three very different, and out of the box books for readers of all ages. While their books are innovative in design and production (glow-in-the-dark etc) they have not compromised the narrative or characters either.

Random House Australia took a massive risk with the creation of the Bluey book series. Although, its well documented how well this iconic series is loved, the care and thought the creators have placed into this book series, at the cost of a longer production period (demand was high MONTHS before release), is simple astounding. Rather than releasing two standard narratives and one sticker book, the team behind BLUEY the books has crafted a unique series of books that is vastly different from everything else on the market. Not one of the books released is designed quite like the other:

Bluey: The Beach is a lift-the-flap narrative, actively asking the reader to partake in the telling of the story.

While Bluey: Fruit Bat has inventively incorporated glow-in-the-dark elements creating a narrative that is tactile in touch (the glow elements are raised), but  awe-inspiring to its readers with the surprise element of light and glowing elements. I for one, can not think of another book quite like Fruit Bat on the market at present.

Then Bluey: Time To Play! (A sticker activity book) is so much more than a standard sticker book as its allows its readers to actively tell their own stories with Bluey, Bingo, Mum and Dad.

With the creation of these unique elements and carefully crafted Bluey Series, I can’t wait to see where Penguin Random House plans to go next. They have set the bar exceptionally high with this series, not only for the longevity of the series itself, but for a whole new standard of children’s board books and the possibilities they can unlock. It’s kind of a game changer. As someone with no previous experience with the Bluey series as a whole (the original Television series), I’m kind of astounded by what has been achieved (and to such high standards) and what it could mean for the future.

Published: 5th November 2019

Publisher: Penguin Random House Australia

Pages: 16

Format: Soft cover sticker book (ARC supplied by the publisher for review. All opinions are my own).

RRP: $9.99

4/5 Stars

Have fun with BLUEY and Bingo as they play their favourite games. 

There are stickers to place, puzzles to solve and much more!

As someone with no previous experience with the Bluey universe (ie. The hit television series), I highly recommend you start with the sticker book. Why? Because the very first page includes a “Meet the Hellers” sticker introduction page, where they explain the characters – Bluey, Bingo, Mum (Chilli) and Dad (Bandit) – and the Brisbane setting. Until reading this information, I was so sure Bluey was a boy, and was quite surprised to learn that Bluey and Bingo are both girls. I loved that, because so many of the books that instantly come to mind that feature dogs as the main characters, are male. It’s just refreshing.

The team have tried their hardest to make  Bluey: A Time to Play! a unique experience  compared to other sticker activity books on the market. While most sticker activity books are short, featuring a few stickers and colouring pages, with the odd activity,  Bluey: A Time to Play! is packed full of endless activities. The book itself is user-friendly, with the stickers being grouped by page and labelled as such (“use these stickers on page 8”) making the book accessible to all ages. In fact, unlike many sticker activities books,  Bluey: A Time to Play!  appears to have been designed with younger kids in mind, keeping the intended audience age in line with the books characters (Bluey is 6, Bingo is 4).

All in all, Bluey: A Time to Play! Is a great addition to the already hit line of books released in the first wave of Bluey merchandise. Its ideal for new fans seeking an introduction, or much-loved fans who are looking for more involvement than simply reading the books for the hundredth time.

To purchase a copy of Bluey: A Time To Play! visit the following online retailers:

Penguin Random House Australia | Angus & Robertson | Big W | Booktopia | QBD

 

Published: 5th November 2019

Publisher: Penguin Random House Australia

Pages: 24

Format: Board Book (ARC supplied by publisher for review. All opinions are my own).

RRP: $14.99

4/5 Stars

In full disclosure, I’ve never watched an episode of the hit-television series BLUEY. I first heard about the series from customers at work who begun to hound me for information on the books months prior to their release.

Upon first picking the book up and reading through it, I was instantly blown away. Not only is the narrative text well presented (no more than roughly four lines per page, and cleverly placed across the page to engage the reader in every aspect of the story) but the bold cartoon illustrations are vibrant and pull the reader in right from the very first page. Each page should feel as sudden assault to the readers sensors with how bright the colours used are, and how they are contrasted against the textured patterns of some of the backgrounds (think lines, swirls, patterns etc), and yet, it somehow just effortlessly works so well together.

The lift-the-flap element gives the book another later of intrigue and tactile involvement, as readers are actively participating in the story. Although lift-the-flap elements are nothing new, it’s interesting to note that they are always childhood favourites, but are elements used sparingly alongside big name characters like Spot and Peppa Pig. While widely popular, I was still surprised to find this element in the book, but loved the surprise none-the-less.

To purchase a copy of Bluey: The Beach, visit the following online retailers:

Penguin Random House Australia | Angus & Robertson  | Big W | Booktopia | QBD |

 

Published: 5th November 2019

Publisher: Penguin Random House Australia

Pages: 24

Format: Board board (ARC supplied by the publishers for review. All opinions are my own.)

RRP: $14.99

4/5 Stars

Join BLUEY on a dreamy night-time adventure. What will you see in the dark?

In Bluey: Fruit Bat we have many of the same features that made Bluey: The Beach such a hit – bold, vibrant cartoon illustrations placed against equally bold backgrounds, featuring the much loved Bluey characters from the hit children’s television series -, this book pushes the boundaries that little bit more by incorporating glow-in-the-dark elements.

By using clusters of stars and the broken lines as glow in the dark elements, Bluey: Fruit Bat has added another layer to board books that I don’t think previously existed. (At least, I can’t recall glowing elements being used since The Not So Scary Ghost paperback from MY childhood). With the glowing elements being raised slightly, it gives the book a tactical element that has proven endlessly popular with the That’s Not My series, but it’s also added an additional layer of light and surprise. Although we know the book features glow-in-the-dark elements from the cover, its still kind of surprising and fun to find it mixed through the story. It’s sure to have kids ohh-ing and ahh-ing as they giggle with delight when the story transforms before their very eyes.

In terms of the narrative, Bluey: Fruit Bat is a sweet tale about the power of one’s imagination. About families, dreams, responsibilities and possibilities. It’s a fun, quirky, and imaginative tale about what it would be like if Bluey didn’t have to go to bed a night and instead, she was a fruit bat. Full of adventure and endless possibility its a feel good story that is sure to enthrall.

What I think I like the most about the Bluey books is the way their messages aren’t necessarily subtle, but they are never preachy or judgmental in tone. The narratives are gentle, fun-loving and warm. Promoting good old-fashioned family fun, in a modern environment.

In my experience as a bookseller, I find it’s this Bluey book that is often overlooked out of the three original books released*. The beach is fun, an obvious hit for Australians during Summer, while Fruit Bats are a bit more mysterious and other. Out of the two board books though, I thoroughly enjoined this one and wished more readers would pick it up. It’s an underrated gem, that needs so much more appreciation and love!

*note: this book is still incredible popular, it’s just an underrated gem compared to the other two.

 

To purchase a copy of Bluey: Fruit Bat, visit the following online retailers:

Penguin Random House Australia | ANGUS & ROBERTSON | Big W | Booktopia | QBD 

Long Lost Review: His Brand of Beautiful by Lily Malone

Long lost Reviews (LLR) is a  monthly feature hosted by Ally @ Ally’s Appraisals where bloggers are encouraged to tackle their review backlog with book reviews that have been sitting there for a long time. Reviews can range from in-depth analyses to one sentence statements with no pressure applied. To learn more and see participating blogs visit Ally’s blog here.

Published:  1st March 2013

Publisher: Escape Publishing, Harlequin Australia’s Digital first imprint

Format: ebook

RRP: $4.99

3/5 Stars

When marketing strategist Tate Newell first meets wine executive Christina Clay, he has one goal in mind: tell Christina he won’t design the new brand for Clay Wines. Tell her thanks, but no thanks. So long, good night. But Tate is a sucker for a damsel in distress and when a diary mix–up leaves Christina in his debt, Tate gets more than he bargained for. What does a resourceful girl do when the best marketing brain in the business won’t play ball? She bluffs. She cheats. And she ups the ante. But when the stakes get too high, does anybody win? Falling in love was never part of this branding brief.

His Brand of Beautiful is a beautiful and sweeping debut by Australian author Lily Malone.

This book is the perfect introduction to the amazing back catalogue that Malone has crafted since the release of His Brand of Beautiful in 2013. Although telling as her debut, compared to later books, this book has all the early trademarks of her writing style; her unique voice, brilliant characters and romantic, somewhat isolated outback settings.

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REVIEW: Bouncing Back – An Eastern Barred Bandicoot Story by Rohan Cleave and illustrated by Coral Tulloch

Published: 1st April 2018

Publisher: CSIRO Publishing

Pages: 32

Format: Hardback picture book (borrowed from the library)

RRP: $24.95

5/5 Stars

A beautifully illustrated story of this marsupial’s plight and how it was saved from extinction.

The Eastern Barred Bandicoot is one of Australia’s most threatened species. When their existence came under extreme threat from habitat loss, predators and human development, Eastern Barred Bandicoots found refuge in the most unlikely of places – a garbage dump. This captivating true story details the plight these small, nocturnal marsupials faced, and the outstanding efforts that ensured their protection. Written by Rohan Cleave and illustrated by Coral Tulloch, Bouncing Backshows that even on the brink of extinction, there is hope for the survival of our most vulnerable species.

Rohan Cleave and Coral Tulloch’s first book, Phasmid: Saving the Lord Howe Island Stick Insect, won a Whitley Award for Children’s Natural History Book and was an Honour Book in the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book Awards (Eve Pownall Information Book category).

Bouncing Back: An Eastern Bandicoot Story by Melbourne zookeeper Rohan Cleave and illustrated by Coral Tulloch, is a non-fiction picture book seeking to educate its readers about the Eastern Barred Bandicoot and the environmental issues/dangers it’s currently facing as an Australian endangered species thanks to deforestation, urban developments, introduced predators and pollution.

This book is quite frankly fascinating. Narrated as though the Eastern Barred Bandicoot itself was talking to you about its various attributes, habitats and facts, the narrative is riveting and quirky, but at the same time, absolutely devastating. With only two natural areas for habitation in the world – Victoria and Tasmania – the Eastern Barred Bandicoot was fast approaching the very real danger of extinction. They had all but vanished from Victoria all together; the last known habitat for them there was a garbage dump prior to intervention from environmental conservation teams! Continue reading

WORLD MEERKAT DAY SPECIAL EDITION REVIEW: ‘Meerkat Splash’ by Aura Parker

Published: 2nd July 2019

Publisher: Puffin Books

Pages: 32

Format: Hardcover Picture Book (Received from the publisher for review)

RRP: $19.99

4/5 Stars

Meerkats cleaning, washing. Woooo! Slipping, sliding, swimming too.

Follow Meerkat Red into the burrow and join all the colourful meerkat friends for one big crazy bathtime! But who makes the biggest MEERKAT SPLASH?

 

 

When I opened my mail to find this delightful picture from Puffin Books (Penguin Random House Australia) I kid you not, I lost my mind. For as long as I can remember, Meerkats have been somewhat of a family favourite; there is just something about their quirky personalities that is overwhelmingly endearing and entrancing. I can’t believe I had no idea this book was even coming out until it turned up in my mailbox.

Meerkat Splash by Aura Parker is an adorable picture book celebrating family, acceptance, individuality, uniqueness, and of course … Meerkats! Deep within the Meerkat burrows, a family of energetic Meerkats are celebrating the end of the day with a bath that gets quite out of hand. With twelve Meerkats in one admittedly large bathtub, mischief and mayhem is sure to ensue.

Aura Parker is an Australian author and illustrator.  Her illustrations are bright, quirky and vibrant as they breathe the very essence of life on to every page. With double-page illustrations, featuring mostly white backgrounds and bold colour-themed illustrations (each Meerkat is given a colour description), the images really speak for themselves as they lift off the stark white page. Accompanied by simple, rhyming text, the overall presentation is clean and inviting, allowing the cheeky story to take centre stage.

While the cover is definitely eye-catching, it is only the start of what is a superb little book with the perfect blend of playfulness, imagination, humour and story. In fact, I particularly love the endpapers that reveal the entire Meerkat burrow, the hub of the family life as each character goes about their business. Despite having read this book multiple times now, each time I go back to read it again, I notice something new so the story feels fresh and invigorating every single time. A point, I think parents of young children are going to particularly love.

Meerkat Splash is a fantastic picture book for young children( especially for those that might need a bit more coaching to get in the tub) and the young at heart. It’s playful, cute, and just a really good feel-good read.

 

To purchase a copy of Meerkat Splash, visit the following online retailers:

Penguin Random House Australia | Amazon AUS | Angus & RobertsonBooktopiaDymocks | QBD |

 

To learn more Aura Parker, visit the following social media sites:

Aura Parker’s WebsiteGoodreads | Instagram | Twitter 

 

To learn more about World Meerkat Day, visiting the following websites:

World Meerkat Facebook Page 

 

 

REVIEW: Mallee Sky by Jodi Toering & Illustrated by Tannya Harricks

Published: 1st February 2019

Publisher: Black Dog Books, imprint of Walker Books Australia

Pages: 32

Format: Hardback Picture book (courtesy of the publisher)

RRP: $24.99

5/5 Stars

An extremely timely and beautiful picture book about the effects of drought and climate change in the Mallee.

The first people of the land call the Mallee “Nowie”. It means sunset country. When the sun goes down the red heat of the day bleeds into the sky and sets it on fire. Drought and rain – life under a Mallee Sky. This poetic text by emerging author Jodi Toering is beautifully accompanied by lush oil paintings by fine artist and illustrator Tannya Harricks.

 

Mallee Sky by Jodi Toering and Illustrated by Tannya Harricks is one of the most beautiful picture books I have ever seen. The story and illustrations are lush, larger than life and brutally honest depictions of life on the land in outback Australia.

The first thing I noticed about Mallee Sky was Tannya Harrick’s stunning oil painting illustrations. As a mutli-award winning artist in her own right, Harrick’s illustrations are beautiful to behold and capture both Jodi Toering’s story and the personality of the the Mallee people and the countryside perfectly. I could honestly stare at her paintings all day, every day.

Every double page spread features full conceptual and realistic pieces of art that convey the multifaceted aspect and nature of the Australian country, towns and people.  In fact Harrick’s artwork really brings the Australian countryside into Toering’s story as a fully fledge character with an over-abundance of stubborn and relentless personality. The scenes are picture perfect and show the desert s in all it’s tenacious glory.

Jodi Toering uses simple, short and sharp descriptions to report the difficulties and stubbornness of the Mallee country where drought has thrived for more years than any one can remember. The text is large and present in a clear, bold font that brokers no argument as it discusses the highly volatile truths of drought, despair, climate change and life in the country.

Toering’s narrative starts out praising the beauty of the country with its undisturbed starry skies, vast rolling landscapes featuring unique flora and fauna, big blue skies, and the unrepentant summer sun that never truly leaves. With each page turned, and more and more remarks on the affects of the relentless attacks by the sun, heat and drought, a stark and unforgiving country is revealed to be struggling, and dying before the communities eyes. With no water to spare, crops, grass and trees alike have long decayed leaving endless seas of dry, dirt paddocks and blistering bitumen as well as vacant shops and homes as families are forced to relocate in the tough times.

It’s not all doom and gloom though, as one day during school, children are greeted with unfamiliar sounds as the sky angrily transforms; the rain finally arrives. Young and old race outside to dance in the rain that they so desperately need – and for some, may not even have seen before. What follows is a country healing from drought, vibrant colours awash the landscape as far as the eye can see and missed flora and fauna return home once again.

To some Mallee Sky will be an introduction to the country they don’t know, far away from the beach fronts, bustling cities and coastal towns, rural Australia and the Mallee Desert in particular is fighting an impossible battle against the brutality of climate change with the ranging sun and drought filled land. For others it will be a story they know well; a confirmation of what they know to be part of their every day lives finally seen and acknowledge by those far removed by proximity and community. It’s a welcoming acknowledgement and embrace by the city, towns and main stream society for what they hold dear and the uphill battle they simply call life on the land.

I honestly adore everything about Mallee Sky by Jodi Toering and Tannya Harricks and find it one of the most eye pleasing and brutally honest picture books out there. It’s a poignant story that Australians living on the coast  are really only coming to terms with  in recent weeks thanks to the widespread campaigning of organisations like Rural Aid, Drought Angels, Buy A Bale and Aussie Helpers just to name a few, and innovative and quick thinking promotions and public crusades by individual farmers and celebrities alike. It’s a haunting and all too familiar story by everyone living on the land in recent memory and one that has scary repercussions for our futures if the community doesn’t act now.

 

To purchase a copy of Mallee sky, visit the following online retailers:

Walker Books Australia | Angus & Robertson | Booktopia | Book Depository | Dymocks | QBD | Wheeler Books

To learn more about Jodi Toering, visit the following social media pages:

Jodi Toering’s Website | Twitter | Walkers Books Australia |

 

To learn more about Tannya Harricks, visit the following social media pages:

Tanya Harricks website | Walker Books Australia |

 

 

 

 

REVIEW: The House On The Mountain by Ella Holcombe and David Cox

 

Published: 4th February 2019

Publisher: Allen & Unwin Australia

Pages: 32

Format: Hardback Picture Book (purchased)

RRP: $24.99

5/5 Stars

The powerful story of a family who lose their home in a bushfire and their journey of recovery.

Remembering Black Saturday

There is a fire coming, and we need to move quickly. Mum and Dad start packing bags, grabbing woollen blankets, the first-aid kit, torches, and then the photo albums. Dad puts Ruby on her lead and ties her up near the back door. My chest feels hollow, like a birdcage.

Atmospheric and intensely moving, this is the story of a family experiencing a bushfire, its devastating aftermath, and the long process of healing and rebuilding.

It’s not often that a picture book makes you cry, but The House On The Mountain did just that.

The House On The Mountain is a dark, and harrowing picture book that seeks to educate, inspire and give hope to those who read it. It follows the story of an unnamed family as they deal with the heat wave that rocked Victoria, Australia, throughout the weekend of the 7th February 2009 and the catastrophic firestorm that swept through dozens of towns killing 173 people and leaving many more injured and homeless.

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Happy Australia Day 2019 + Giveaway

Happy Australia Day everybody.

While the rest of Australia is drinking a beer  or two and eating sausages off a BBQ this year I’ll be spending my Australia Day working. Just because I’m not out celebrating in the traditional sense though, I wanted to host a giveaway showcasing just some of the amazing talent that call Australia home.

One of my biggest passions in life is books, particularly those by some of our home grown super stars – both those well known, and some not-so-well-known. I love showcasing Aussie authors, and actively try to promote and read as many of them as I possibly can.  It’s not usual to find me shoving them in my friends and families faces, recommending them at work, or really singing them praise everywhere I go.  Continue reading

COVER REVEAL: The Cinema At Starlight Creek by Alli Sinclair


Available: 20 May, 2019

A heart-stirring novel of loss, love and new hope set against the glamorous backdrop of 1950s Hollywood and a small Australian country town.

How far would you go to follow your dream?

Queensland, 1994: When location manager Claire Montgomery arrives in rural Queensland to work on a TV mini-series, she’s captivated by the beauty of Starlight Creek and the surrounding sugarcane fields. Working in a male-dominated industry is challenging, but Claire has never let that stop her pursuing her dreams-until now. She must gain permission to film at Australia’s most historically significant art deco cinema, located at Starlight Creek. But there is trouble ahead. The community is fractured and the cinema’s reclusive owner, Hattie Fitzpatrick, and her enigmatic great nephew, Luke Jackson, stand in her way, putting Claire’s career-launching project-and her heart-at risk.

Hollywood, 1950: Lena Lee has struggled to find the break that will catapult her into a star with influence. She longs for roles about strong, independent women but with Hollywood engulfed in politics and a censorship battle, Lena’s timing is wrong. Forced to keep her love affair with actor Reeves Garrity a secret, Lena puts her career on the line to fight for equality for women in an industry ruled by men. Her generous and caring nature steers her onto a treacherous path, leaving Lena questioning what she is willing to endure to get what she desires.

Can two women-decades apart-uncover lies and secrets to live the life they’ve dared to dream?

Pre-order available at the following online retailers:

Harper Collins Australia | Amazon AUS | Apple Ibooks | Booktopia | Kobo | Google Play

Alli’s Bio:

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Alli Sinclair, an adventurer at heart, has won multiple awards for her writing. She has lived in Argentina, Peru and Canada, and has climbed some of the world’s highest mountains, worked as a tour guide in South and Central America and has travelled the globe. She enjoys immersing herself in exotic destinations, cultures and languages but Australia has always been close to Alli’s heart.

Alli hosts retreats for Writers at Sea and presents writing workshops around Australia, as well as working on international film projects. She’s a volunteer role model with Books in Homes and is an ambassador for the Fiji Book Drive. Alli’s books explore history, culture, love and grief, and relationships between family, friends and lovers. She captures the romance and thrill of discovering old and new worlds, and loves taking readers on a journey of discovery. 

You can  sign up for her newsletter here.

To learn more about Alli Sinclair, visit the follow social media sites:

Facebook | Author Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Google +

12 Days of Christmas Giveaway Extravaganza Day 3: Johnathan Thurston’s Autobiography (SIGNED)

This year I’m running a crazy 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway Extravaganza whereby I giveaway a different book to one lucky winner for 12 days in the lead up to Christmas (and on the 26,27 and 28th December to a slight delay at the start of the promotion).

Today’s book to be won as part of the 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway Extravaganza is a signed hardback of Johnathan Thurston’s newly released autobiography – JT: Johnathan Thurston. The autobiography.
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REVIEW: In At The Deep End by Penelope Janu

Published: 23rd January 2017

Publisher: Harlequin Mira

Pages: 348

Format: Print, soft cover courtesy of the publisher

RRP: $29.99 (print)/ $9.99 (Ebook)

5/5 Stars

A quick-witted, contemporary romance about losing your cool.

What woman doesn’t love a real-life hero? Harriet Scott, for one. The fiercely independent daughter of famous adventurers, she grew up travelling the world on the environmental flagship The Watch. So when Harriet’s ship sinks in Antarctica and she has to be rescued by Commander Per Amundsen, an infuriatingly capable Norwegian naval officer and living breathing action hero, her world is turned upside down.

Like their namesakes, the original Scott and Amundsen who competed to reach the South Pole first, Per and Harriet have different ways of doing things. Per thinks Harriet is an accident waiting to happen; Harriet thinks Per is a control freak. But when Harriet realises that Per is the only one who can help her fund the new ship she desperately wants, she is forced to cooperate with him.

Per refuses to assist unless Harriet allows him to teach her to swim. But there is more to Harriet’s terrible fear of water than meets the eye. Can Harriet face her fears and come to terms with the trauma and loss of her past? And will she begin to appreciate that some risks are well worth taking—and that polar opposites can, in fact, attract?

In the interest of full disclosure, I read this book way back in 2017, but it has taken me this long to get my thoughts straight and countless edits and rewrites of this review, before I was happy to post it. When I write a review, I have this unrealistic expectation that the review will reflect and represent everything the book meant to me… when it comes to this book however, words failed me big time. They still do, that is the kind of power it has on me, even now when almost twelve months has past since I initially read it.

In At The Deep End was a book I initially dismissed. There was something about the cover that kept turning me away from the book when it kept appearing in pre-release emails. It wasn’t until a publicist reached out to me and told me I’d like the book and did I want a review copy, that I gave in and gave it a chance… little did I know then how much this book would change me, the power it would hold over me, and that I would eventually end up owning a copy purchased in every available format, while also forcing it on to friends and family at every chance I was given.

Billed as a rom-com, I expected to laugh while reading In At The Deep End; what I didn’t expect however was to cry. And not a couple of tears either; I’m talking about the full on sobbing, red-rimmed eyes, bubbling mess ugly tears kind of crying. My heart was hurting for everything that these characters went through and continued to go through. I didn’t know at times if I want to reach through the pages and hug them or strangle them for the decisions they were making. I wanted, still want too, to cocoon them from everything , and if that’s not a mark of a brilliant book by a masterfully story teller, I really don’t know what is.

In At The Deep End is an outstanding debut novel by Australian author Penelope Janu. Set in both Sydney and the Antarctic, it’s a story about the environment, family and exactly how far we are willing to go to protect the ones we love the most. It’s incredibly well researched, inspiring and uplifting, and one of the most well written and masterfully told stories that I read in 2017 hands down. The characters and the feelings they evoked in me, still linger today at the end of 2018.

As far as the story goes, I’m not going to tell you much, or really anything about this book except to say that it’s an epic slow burn romance that is sure to capture your heart and make you swoon. It’s the perfect read for fans of the enemies-to-lovers trope and just anyone who likes a compelling, intelligent and well written narrative.

Both Harriet and Per are super strong characters, who are both extremely stubborn and steadfast and were always destined to clash in a dramatic way. Fueled by emotions, historical backgrounds and environmental interests, the two characters have a magnetic connection that transcends the words on the page; all of which gives this already powerful story an extra level of depth and intellectual acclaim that is second to none in my eyes. What’s more the Antarctica setting and environmental focus, gives In At The Deep End a refreshing and unique feel that I have not witnessed before.  All of which combines to make on hell of hell good read with a phenomenal slow burn romance that literal develops before your eyes.

I think it’s safe to say, that In At The Deep End by Penelope Janu is one of my all time favourite books now. While it re-taught me a valuable lesson of not judging a book by the cover again (we are all guilty of it),  it also set Penelope Janu as one of my most highly anticipated must buy authors. Since reading this book in 2017, Janu has released three more books and I’ve read them all and been on the hunt for each and every one of them on release day. I’ve also re-read In At The Deep End twice more since then.

In At The Deep End is the perfect read to cool you down during these insane summer heat waves, making it a perfect beach read. While the hopeless romantics out there, and souls with massive hearts, will cry a number of tears, you will laugh so much more than you will cry. I truly believe this book is phenomenal and you really need to pick up a copy ASAP.

 

To learn more about Penelope Janu, visit the following social media sites:

Penelope Janu’s website | Facebook | Harlequin Australia | Goodreads |

To purchase a copy of In At The Deep End, visit the following online retailers:

Harlequin Australia | Booktopia | Angus & Robertson’s Bookworld | Amazon AUS | Amazon US | Ibooks | Dymocks | Google Play | Kobo