About the Book:
Love is random. Accidental. You just live your life and then one day it’ll hit you with the right person.
Wandering soul Freya ‘Free’ Paterson has finally come back home. Idealistic and trusting, she’s landed the job of her dreams working on an art project with the local school, but she hadn’t planned on meeting the man of her dreams as well.
With his irresistible Irish accent, Constable Finn Kelly is everything Free wants – genuine, kind . . . and handsome as hell. He’s also everything Free isn’t – stable and dependable. Yet despite the passion simmering between them, he just wants to be friends. What is he trying to hide?
As Free throws herself into the challenges of her new job, fending off the unwelcome advances of a colleague and helping to save her beloved Herne River, Finn won’t stay out of her way, or out of her heart.
But just when she needs him the most, will Finn reveal his true colours?
True Blue is the follow up to the very lovely Dear Banjo, which I reviewed last year. I quite enjoyed this story, and while it failed to reach the heights of its predecessor (for me), there were many moments of great connection between the characters and a swag of relevant issues knitting the story together. It was also lovely to see Willow and Tom get their happy ever after.
True Blue is Free’s story, Willow’s youngest sister. I wasn’t able to really connect with Free, and I think this was my ‘blocker’ with this story, that ‘thing’ that bothers you so much it almost affects your overall enjoyment. Her airy fairy artsy manner was more irritating than endearing, but I will absolutely accept full responsibility for that: I have little patience for sketchy people, and boy, was Free sketchy. Driving around with her handbag on her car roof, never having any food in her house, unable to keep track of her own affairs, not shutting her garage door because she was too tired (I was glad there was a consequence for that!); she seemed like a child, to be honest, incompetent at life and so naive. She said whatever was on her mind, whether it was appropriate or not and there were often times when her attention would wander mid-conversation in the most bizarre manner. Yes, she was a lovely person, no denying that, but I was so grateful to Beth for the wakeup call she sent Free’s way because in the lead up to that, I was well and truly over her entirely.
However, and there is a really big however, I still thoroughly enjoyed this novel and would recommend it in a heartbeat. It’s a great story with so much warmth and community spirit infused throughout. Every part of the novel to do with art was wonderful and at these times, I could really see where Sasha was taking Free as a character and I could appreciate that journey. There are a myraid of other issues explored throughout the narrative, all of them relevant to small town Australia and all of them articulated with finesse. There was so much personality injected into this story, it was very Australian, in the very best of ways. And that cat! What a cheeky double agent! I can’t go past an animal character who holds their own in a scene.
It’s testimony to Sasha’s talent as a writer that I can enjoy a story without really liking the main character – that takes skill! I’m looking forward to Beth’s story, out next year, as I have a bit of a soft spot for her. True Blue moves along at a nice pace, with plenty of romance, madness and mayhem, as well as insightful observations on remote small community issues. I did like how Sasha set Free up as such a positive role model for teens, and likewise, I appreciated how Sasha crafted her teenagers as intelligent and creative young adults as opposed to troubled delinquents. True Blue pulsed with positivity and hopeful highlights. It’s a warmheated and quintessentially Australian story with a powerful message about love and acceptance at its core.
Thanks is extended to Penguin Random House Australia for providing me with a copy of True Blue for review.
About the Author:
Sasha Wasley was born and raised in Perth, Western Australia. She lives in the Swan Valley wine region with her two daughters. She writes commercial fiction, crossover new adult/YA mysteries and paranormal. Sasha Wasley’s debut novel, The Seventh, was published in January 2015. Her first new adult paranormal romance series, The Incorruptibles, debuted in 2016. Dear Banjo, the first in the Paterson Sisters series, was published in 2017.
Trade Paperback – 9780143784548; Michael Joseph
EBook- 9780143784555; Penguin eBooks