All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Review: Kakadu Sunset by Annie Seaton

on July 11, 2017

Kakadu Sunset (Porter Sisters #1)
Annie Seaton
Pan Macmillan AUS
2015, 373p
Copy courtesy of the publisher

Blurb {from the publisher/Goodreads.com}:

In the ancient lands of Kakadu, it’s not just the crocodiles you should be afraid of…

Helicopter pilot Ellie Porter loves her job. Soaring above the glorious Kakadu National Park, she feels freed from the heavy losses of her beloved family farm and the questions around her father’s suicide. But when a search-and-rescue mission on the boundary of the older property reveals unusual excavation works, Ellie vows to investigate.

The last thing she needs is her bad-tempered co-pilot, Kane McClaren, interfering. The son of the current owners of the farm, her attraction to him is a distraction she can’t afford, especially when someone threatens to put a stop to her inquiries – by any means necessary.

Ellie will have to trust Kane if she is to have any hope of uncovering the truth of what is really going on. Between Ellie’s damage and Kane’s secrets, can they find a way to open up to each other before the shadowy forces shut her up…for good?

So recently I read the third book in this loosely linked series where each book features a Porter sister. I enjoyed it but there were definitely aspects of that book that I felt would’ve been more powerful if I’d read the previous books and understood the sisters’ background a little better. Thanks to Pan Macmillan AUS I now have both the previous books and dived into the first one, set near beautiful Kakadu. I’ve read a bunch of books recently with Northern Territory settings and it’s just making me really want to go there.

Ellie works as a private chopper pilot, doing scenic flights for tourists. The second pilot has just disappeared and her employer has hired Kane McClaren although there’s been a bit of miscommunication. Kane is happy to work as an engineer, seeing to the helicopters and making sure they’re in pristine condition but he no longer flies – at all. Ellie will have to take all the flights, something that doesn’t particularly endear Kane to her at the beginning.

Whilst on a flight, Ellie notices something very odd going on at the farm her parents once owned. Now owned by a local politician, Ellie knows what she sees – and not only is it illegal, it will have devastating affects on the local environment. She’s determined to find out what is going on there and why no one knows about it, which sends her into a very dangerous situation that could cost her and others their lives.

Ellie is so awesome. A feisty, confident woman with a really interesting job that she absolutely loves. It’s clear that she has lingering feelings related to her old farm. It was a place of hope and failure, love and terrible loss. What’s going on there now she knows is very wrong, despite some false assurances from the current owner. She isn’t the sort to just sit by and see what happens either, she investigates and noses around a little, questioning people and trying to get to the bottom of it, despite a few subtle warnings.

Kane is new to Ellie’s work, good looking but with a shadow hanging over him. Ellie has always maintained a strict platonic relationship with her colleagues but Kane definitely makes her think twice about that rule. I loved Ellie and Kane together. Ellie seemed quite serious but Kane brought out a more fun, light-hearted side in her and in return she gave him a friendship he so desperately needed as well as support through some difficult times. The two of them really complimented each other and fit seamlessly together as a couple with a strong friendship base. Kane wasn’t disrespectful of Ellie’s job, like some men were when they found out they were being flown by a woman and he knew she was a competent pilot and respected her skills. Kane has some issues from his past prior to arriving in the Northern Territory which are detailed in a very believable and raw sort of way. I really felt for him and you could see how hard he was struggling to control it through sheer willpower alone.

The mystery was really good as well – lots of players and the behind the scenes political stuff was quite interesting too. Bribes and pressure to vote a certain way – I’m sure it probably happens in real life too, to some extent. It kept me on the edge of my seat towards the end, there was lots of action and quite a few of the characters were in precarious situations. I’m really glad I was able to read this as it definitely gave me some good background knowledge on the death of the girls’ father and how it had affected them all. This book gives them the kind of closure that they need in regards to what happened, although the trauma of it still hangs over Dru in the third book. I’m really looking forward to the second book and Emma’s story.

8/10

Book #119 of 2017

Kakadu Sunset is book #38 of the Australian Women Writers Challenge 2017

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