All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

North Star – Karly Lane

on January 2, 2013

North StarNorth Star
Karly Lane
Allen & Unwin
2011, eBook
Bought for my Kindle

Since her divorce, Kate has felt like she can’t get back on even ground. She’s been working two jobs to keep a roof over her head and the head of her two children after having to sell the lovely family home in order to pay her husband’s gambling debts. He has continued to gamble, continued to make excuses and Kate has had to take action to keep her children out of the situation. As a result, her moody teenage daughter Georgia isn’t feeling very kindly towards her at the moment and it gets even worse when Kate is informed that her grandfather, a mean alcoholic that she’s had no contact with in over fifteen years, has died and left her North Star, a large property.

At first Kate’s plans were to fix up the house, which has been neglected and get it back on the market. But being back there, being in the house where she spent time with her beloved gran and felt real love, plants a seed of hope within her. Kate owns the property outright so it doesn’t come with the trappings of a mortgage. If she can find a way to make a little income, just enough to cover what they need, she thinks that they can make North Star their future. Georgia is less than enthusiastic, not willing to leave behind her friends and her social life for a dump in the middle of no where. Kate’s younger child Liam is more open to the idea and Kate hopes that living in a small town where he’ll have the chance to make friends will give her son the confidence he so desperately needs.

Kate, along with her childhood friend Jenny, Jenny’s husband and two children, begins the hard work of making the homestead liveable again. Just as she feels she’s beginning to make progress, in all aspects of her life by setting the house to rights, finding her feet in the new town, even making a friend that could possibly turn into something more, Kate faces opposition from a neighbouring grazier who seems determined to bully her off her land. And then her ex-husband turns up, seeing opportunity in Kate’s new found inheritance. He isn’t above playing games using their children and threatening Kate with a secret she has held close for many long years.

I’ve had a copy of North Star on my kindle for some time – ever since I read Karly’s second book, Morgan’s Law. She’s since released a 3rd, Bridie’s Choice which I’ve been hearing excellent things about and before I read that, I wanted to catch up by reading this one as well. I always like having a few books on the kindle that I think I’ll really enjoy in case I go away and am looking for something like a ‘sure bet’ to read and North Star was definitely one of these.

Kate was such a tough, admirable character. She’d had a horrible childhood, the only bright spot the times she went with her gran on North Star. She married young after being forced off North Star in tragedy and her and her husband worked hard to pay off their house only to then lose it to her husband’s gambling debts. You get the feeling that Kate craves stability, both emotional and financial after her upbringing and for her to lose the house was a huge blow. She had to work two jobs just to pay for the rent in a small flat, somewhere really unsuitable for herself and her two children. Her children have also been affected terribly by the marriage breakdown. Her teenage daughter Georgia is pushing the boundaries – sneaking out, experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Kate thinks that hopefully, being removed from those influences might have a positive effect on her daughter, even if she’s brought her attitude all the way out to North Star. Kate’s son Liam is younger and painfully shy. He needs some stability and structure desperately and Kate hopes to provide all that and more with the idea she’s had for starting a business on the property.

What I enjoyed about this novel was Kate’s attitude to her ‘fresh start’. She works so hard at fixing up the house to make it habitable again, she tries so hard with her children. She doesn’t lose her temper with Georgia when she’s rude and pushing the boundaries when it would be tempting to come down on her more severely. She also takes things very cautiously with John, the local police officer who makes it quite clear that he’s very interested in Kate for the long term. Kate hasn’t been involved with many men at all and she has some trauma in her past that makes it hard for her and she also has herself and her children to think of. They’ve all been hurt recently and you can tell that she wants to make sure that this is absolutely right before she proceeds. Unfortunately just as she makes that decision and takes that step, her ex-husband rolls into town, determined to make trouble, especially when he spots that Kate is slowly forging a life for herself without him and with someone else.

North Star is such an enjoyable book, it’s one of those wonderful reads that you just sink into and emerge from hours later, not quite sure where the time went. There’s an undercurrent of suspense running through the latter half as a story from long ago is unfolded. I can’t wait to get to Bridie’s Choice when I get home!


Book #287 of 2012

4 responses to “North Star – Karly Lane

  1. This sounds like a book I would enjoy. It kind of sounds like a Lifetime movie.

  2. Marg says:

    I need to read Karly Lane. I am pretty sure I will like her when I do!

  3. Oh I love Karly Lane! So glad you enjoyed this one, this was one of my favourite books last year. You’re absolutely spot on saying it’s a book you can immerse yourself in. I find all her books like that, Lane has such a great way with words and drawing out the essence of her characters. You’ll love Bridie’s Choice too!

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