Review round-up: Australian women writers – Romantic suspense and crime fiction
To kick-off #AWW2012, I thought I’d post a list of reviews we’ve previously posted for books written by Australian women. I’ve included a short except from each review to give you an idea of what we thought of each book.
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll also be retweeting links to these reviews because, in the era of e-publishing, there’s no reason why you can’t grab a copy of their books and try them yourself! Click here for a full list of our #AWW2012 reviews.
As Darkness Falls by Bronwyn Parry (romantic suspense)
An excellent debut novel, and it makes me so glad to finally read an Aussie romance that never once had me rolling my eyes. You can read the first chapter here. If you’re still not convinced, I’d encourage you to check your local library. If, like me, you’ve basically been reading decades worth of US-centric romances, you may find something refreshing and real and genuinely touching in this novel.
Cold Front by Ann Somerville (romantic elements)
Worth a read, although strict romance readers may not enjoy it as much if they don’t also enjoy forensics and police procedurals because this is a major part of the story… But even when they’re not in bed (or the shower), Dek and Ren make a very good team… Their chemistry goes beyond sex and it made me want to see them together for the long haul.
Dark Country by Bronwyn Parry (romantic suspense)
The plot is complicated enough to sustain the suspense, and the love story is believable, although hardcore romantic suspense readers might find it a little sparse—more so than in Parry’s first book—and probably reflects its Australian target market. I may not have missed any meals reading this book, but it was definitely a page-turner.
Red Dust by Fleur McDonald (romantic suspense)
Although there may not be enough romance or mystery to sustain genre readers, I’d recommend it for its faithfulness to the outback setting, seen through the eyes of a strong, pragmatic protagonist. I’m a city girl through and through, but I felt the heat and the grit and the roughness and, yes, the romance of the land as I read this book, and I’m looking forward to seeing how McDonald’s style develops in future books.
Border Watch (re-released as Wings of Fear) by Helene Young (romantic suspense)
The writing was both intelligent and down to earth without being boring. The terrorist threat and security protocol were expertly handled. This is a book to refresh your romantic palate without completely departing from the genre.
Wings of Fear (formerly Border Watch) by Helene Young (romantic suspense)
I liked this book. It was a strong, action-packed debut. For me it was less of a suspense and more of an adventure—with guns.
Viper’s Kiss by Shannon Curtis (romantic suspense)
This book is a bit all over the place. There’s enough for the story to be a fun romp for readers looking for a quick romantic suspense fix, but it lacks the depth I want in a romance and the plausibility I want in suspense.