Thursday, September 10, 2009

REVIEW: September Moon by Candice Proctor

PAGES: 337
SETTING: Historical - Australia 1860's
TYPE: Straight Romance
REASON FOR READING: Because I loved her other books written about Australia; Night in Eden and Whispers of Heaven - both are keepers!

Amanda Davenport is an Englishwoman working as a secretary in Australia. When her employers die unexpectedly she is left stranded until the next ship leaves for England which is many months away. She is alone, nearly penniless and desperate to find work. She applies for a job as governess to the Patrick O'Reilly family who live on a sheep station in the wild Australia outback. When she arrives at her new home and sees the harsh living conditions she realizes that she has probably made a horrible mistake. The land is in the midst of a terrible drought, the children are hellions and determined to make her life miserable, and Patrick O'Reilly is rough and uncouth. But Amanda must make the best of it until her agreed upon employment ends and she can return to her beloved England.

Slowly Amanda comes to care for the children. They were abandoned by their mother and are angry and deeply hurt, but eventually Amanda wins them over and they come to rely on her. Patrick is intelligent, a caring father, and works hard to make his station a success. He is also still bitter towards his English wife who abandoned him and his children because she hated the outback.

Patrick is a fantastic hero and he comes to see that Amanda is not such a prim English governess. She has a passionate side and he is very attracted to her. The sexual tension between them just sizzles and their growing attraction leads to some wonderful love scenes. Amanda finally realizes that this is where she belongs even though the living conditions get worse as the drought continues. It takes a while for the children and especially Patrick to trust her not to abandon them, but Amanda is one amazingly tough woman.

Proctor is an outstanding author and her vivid descriptions of the Australian outback were wonderfully drawn and compelling. She also paints a fascinating picture of life on a sheep station in the 1860s. And the characterizations are so strong that I just fell in love with Patrick and Amanda, and the three children, Hannah, Liam and Missy. In fact I had a hard time putting it down. After finishing the book I flipped back to the first page and read it again! I just could not get this setting and characters out of my mind. And that doesn't happen often for me. Another keeper!



Rosie said...

I picked up my first Proctor about 2 years ago all due to Kristie(j) and Tara Marie (Romance Reading Mom). I really liked this one too.

ReneeW said...

Rosie: I have read lots of book just because Kristie said :) And Tara too. I'm so glad she is back blogging.

Tara Marie said...

I really love Candice Proctor--must do some rereading. :)

And, I'm glad I'm back too ;)

ReneeW said...

Tara: This is so worth a re-read!

Kristie (J) said...

Of all the authors who were in DC at the conference, the one I gushed at - yes - I gushed - embarrassingly so, was CH Harris - aka Candice Proctor. I asked her if she missed writing straight romance and she said that yes she did - so who knows - maybe someday we might see her return and wright another one.
Oh - and I loved this book too :-)

ReneeW said...

Kristie: Oh, you lucky! I would have gushed too. I am enjoying her historical mystery series but I really hope she writes another romance someday.

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