Showing posts from September, 2013

Book review: Dead Cat Bounce by Peter Cotton

Dead Cat Bounce has a great tag line: "Two dead…three missing…just days before the federal election". Set in Canberra, this police procedural begins with finding a body in the mud near Attunga Point on Lake Burley Griffin. Detective Darren Glass of the Australian Federal Police and his love interest, journalist and 'Live Cam girl', Jean Acheson, investigate the murder of a federal minister in the middle of an election campaign. Great sense of place, especially the scenes at Lake George, but lots of action in inner Canberra suburbs is nicely evoked, with a solid local background. Definitely worth reading to the end to find out whodunit, or whydunit, although there were some very clear pointers earlier in the story. I'd like to read more stories featuring Detective Glass. Attunga Point is just west of the Canberra Yacht Club. There is mud there, but the pathway and other elements described sound more like East Basin to me, perhaps somewhere near the ACT Hos

Book review: Grey Jack Road by J T McGowan

This well-written story could be described as an anti-romance, describing how two people become friends and, eventually, more than friends, after their partners cheat on them.  The greatest strength of the book is the sense of place it conveys. The setting is near Bredbo and Cooma, on the Monaro Tablelands. The descriptions of the old farm house, the wildlife, and the miseries of winter are absolutely accurate and very nicely done. The beautiful cover image is a preview of this lovely writing. This book deals with the grief of betrayal, and the protagonists, Sam and Tim, do a lot of drinking and swearing and make some poor decisions in the process. Recommended for Australians who want to read about their own country's landscapes, or overseas readers wanting a taste of Australian life in the bush. The romance side was OK, maybe a little slow or underdone compared with mainstream romances, but still enjoyable.