Honeybee by Craig Silvey

Honeybee by Craig Silvey

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed Honeybee, although there was a lot of suspension of disbelief involved. Don’t get me wrong, I like a story where I have to suspend my disbelief and go with it – but as it was aiming to be realistic, there were more than a few times I was drawn out of the story with the thought of, ‘but it doesn’t work that way’.
I loved Honeybee, I liked the character and the growth. I found his lack of communication frustrating but highly believable. I really liked how Vic came into his life, and I liked the choices he made to try and keep people being nice to him.
Aggie was hard to accept as a real person, but I loved her nonetheless! Their friendship was an amazing aspect of the story and I loved her parents for their understated role.
I guess, the part I really struggled with was the mum’s addiction problems and how they were handled and shown. I also struggled with Steve as a character because I found his whole storyline too convenient and too nice for the person he was. His knowledge of Honeybee’s home and the things Honeybee knew, and the contacts Steve was supposed to have – it was all a bit silly how that ended.
In the end, it was a bit of a fairytale, which doesn’t take away from the gorgeous story-writing, and the quite brilliant observations around changing times and acceptance of people for who they are, but the cost of that clashing with old-views and beliefs. It was a great read, and I found it so easy to pick up and continue despite some hard passages.
Another excellent Australian novel that doesn’t revert to harsh landscape references to prove it’s Australian-ness – yay!

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Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Very happy that this instalment broke the formula of the first three of the series!
I enjoyed the ride and the growth that Robin and Cormoran made, long overdue for both and so very welcome.
Cormoran and his relationships with family were covered in well-written scenarios that gave his character credibility in his feelings towards his family members. Joan’s storyline was beautiful and I thought she added a depth to the overall story.
I was invested in the storyline, I wanted to know what happened to Margot, and I enjoyed the time that the author took for this investigation to play out – it meant that there could be a focus on other investigations without it taking away from the main storyline or make it seem too much.
I thought that the Morris storyline was well-written and had an excellent conclusion, and I found the time given to issues women face in the workplace was enough while still being exact.
There were a few parts of the mystery where I thought the ending was going to be different, and I have to say that there were enough clues for the ending to make sense – but it still surprised me, which is exactly what I want in a crime novel.
Loved that this series seems to be back on track, can’t wait for the next one!

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All Our Shimmering Skies by Trent Dalton

All Our Shimmering Skies by Trent Dalton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a fantastic ride that was dense while being light at the same time.
Despite knowing about the bombing of Darwin, the details of the attack were unknown to me, I found it interesting to read about that point in history.
I have a deep dislike for how Australian authors describe the Australian landscape, and I often will stop reading if a book falls into dry, harsh language. Trent Dalton was able to take me on a journey through the deep bush where I felt I saw the beauty of the Australian landscape, I could see what it looked like, it was familiar, and it wasn’t harsh and brutal. I loved this aspect of his writing in this story.
I found the characters fantastical but real at the same time, I liked their stories and progression for all characters – even Aubrey. The fact that Bert the Shovel made an impression shows the author’s talent for creating excellent characters for us to enjoy.
The tale of the curse of Tom Berry was great and told in a wonderful maze of ways that really built the curse and family history. However, I felt that Longcoat Bob said exactly what Tom Berry had told in the end, so I was a little confused about the gold being stolen and the origin of the curse.
I found it hard to get into, and there was one stop too many along the way to the ending that seemed forced. Apart from that, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend to anyone who enjoys a great Australian tale.

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