Down London Road by Samantha Young
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Even after noting that some fans of the first book were disappointed in the second book in this series, Down London Road, I was still eagerly anticipating its release.
I am pleased to say that I loved it. It is one of those books that finds me glaring at the clock in the wee hours on the morning wishing time would stand still because I know I need to put my book down and get some sleep...but I just didn't want to stop reading...the story had me so engrossed that I just needed to know it all.
I really liked the characters, surprising myself that I warmed to Cam after he was so harshly judgmental of Jo in the beginning, but warm to him I did and I loved that he was man enough to admit his faults. I could understand why Jo was dating someone like Malcolm, after everything she had been through she was just trying to protect her brother, but also protect herself. I always find it difficult to read romance novels when the characters you know are going to end up with each other, are dating other people. This story just flowed so well for me that it really didn't bother me. In the real world it isn't unheard of that people dating all of a sudden find themselves attracted to someone else. Neither Cam nor Jo had been in their relationship for a long period of time so I found it plausible that they found themselves attracted to each other.
I don't want to give away spoilers, so I'll just say that I think Samantha Young has written a wonderful story and I will eagerly anticipate her next release.
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Sunday, May 26, 2013
Friday, March 22, 2013
Well I decided after my impromptu post last week that I really needed to become more regular with my posting...so much goes through my mind each week and I never record it in any way. My friend Jenny gave me a lovely journal for Christmas this year and it sits beside my bed looking very pretty but without a word recorded each week. For someone who regularly kept journals prior to children, and in the early years of parenting, this is something that frustrates me. This week is another usual week for me...I get to the end and feel like I've achieved nothing, but in fact have been quite productive. At present I'm feeling extremely lost...not really sure what my ambitions are and what direction I really want my life to take. It goes without saying that my priority role each week is as a mother. I need to care for my children..make sure they are safe, fed and loved. This is a box I tick each week. But what is left after that? What is it that I'm trying to achieve? I need to work...or rather I need to be bringing some income into the family coffers. My husband made a life changing decision nearly two years ago to leave the security of his career...for many and varied reasons that I won't go into on my blog. I have so much admiration for my husband for the values he upholds in his career and am constantly amazed by his achievements. He is loving his new career and being able to do what he wants to do the way he wants to do it. Unfortunately it has meant of loss of financial security to pay the bills and keep our heads above water. We don't live an extravagant life, but one of our greatest expenses is that our children attend a private school. It is something that if we can avoid changing it we will. If I can work purely to pay for that, then I will. Even without that, I feel like I am ready to go back to work...I want to go back to work and feel like I'm contributing something to our finances. I recently spent three works working at the chambers where my husband has an offer and I LOVED it!. Granted, I knew that it was for three weeks and that after that the receptionist would be returning from her holiday. Maybe that made the whole scenario easier to bare. I finished at 2.30-3 o'clock every day and was therefore able to be home in the afternoon with the kids. My husband did take a little more care in his schedule to help out around the house. I felt that we worked together as a team, more so than we usually do. My husband told me that he thought I was a happier person when I was working. I haven't worked full-time since my eldest child was born 12 years ago. When contemplating returning to the workforce I did feel like I was starting at the beginning again and turned my thoughts to how I have spent the last 12 years and what would I like to do. I was competent at my last job, more than competent I thought, but it wasn't something I felt a desire to return to. Also we are finding it hard to get our head around what will our children do in the school holidays if I am working full time. Once thing I've loved over the last 12 years is supporting my children in their schooling. I was always the first to volunteer to help in the classroom, much to my friend's dismay...why didn't I take some time for myself...go and have a coffee. To me it wasn't a chore, it was something I was happy to do. For this reason I enrolled with TAFE to complete the Certificate III in Education Support. I really enjoy my placement days at school. The whole TAFE side of things to me seems very disorganised and whole lot of red tape you have to go through to get a piece of paper that will tell me I am qualified to do the job, when in reality it is 'on the job' experience that teaches you the most. As much as our Government promised to put more funding into, it now seems that there is little funding going into teacher support roles. What is most disheartening at the moment is the difficulty in even getting an interview for a job. I've applied for a few jobs, I'll admit I have been selective in what I am applying for, but to date haven't even been selected for an interview. A job I recently applied for in a school, in an administrative position, there were well over 300 applicants. I do know of someone who managed to get an interview, and is even down to the second interview panel, and who I know blatantly lied about recent job experiences. She hasn't worked in over 5 years, but knows someone who said "say that you've been working for me". It is so disheartening, because I can't compete with that. I am honest and always will be. I have even enquired about night fill at the local supermarket, they have a list a mile long and aren't taking on anyone new. I feel like i'm 17 again...can't get a job without experience but can't get experience without a job. Who knows what 2013 will hold for me job wise, but for now will just try and soldier on and hope that good fortune will smile upon our family. I do know in the grand scheme of things we are better off than most, so I try not to think 'woe is me' and 'keep on swimming' as Nemo tells us to!
Friday, March 15, 2013
My blog is a rarely updated thing...its something I always think to do but never actually get around to posting blog posts. Today is a day where I feel like I have so much to say...I want to sit with a friend and pour my heart out...maybe that's where a blog post should come in. Today was emotionally very big day, I attended two funerals and two people that have been in my life for a lot of years...one for over 30 years and another who has been in my life for over 20 years...not every week and in some years not even every year...but always there and when I did see them it was like we had seen each other yesterday. First funeral for today was my eldest brother's best mate, Gary Atkinson (also known as Schultz). I first met Gary when my eldest brother befriended him, I was probably in my late teens. They rented an old Queenslander on the top of the mountain and I dropped in from time to time and quite often saw them at my Mum's place. My brother and Gary were the type of mates who sometimes spent nearly every day of the week together and as they grew older and had other things in their life, would catch up from time to time. Gary was plain and simply a 'good bloke'. He certainly had not had the easy road to life but always managed to be cheerful and welcoming whenever I saw him. I really only knew of his health issues and tough times because of my brother telling me so, you would never have known it from Gary himself. Gary was a Type 1 Diabetic from infancy and in his later years suffered from various health complaints, one of which was probably depression. Depression has such a stigma attached to it that is often undeserved. Gary was only 43, too young for the end of life, but upon reflection it was like he had lived 100 years. It was a real lesson to my kids when Gary came into their lives. If you saw him in the street it would be very easy to judge Gary from his exterior...piercings, tattoos, facial hair, unique dress code. I clearly remember Gary visiting at our home and my two youngest children being wary of going out and saying hello because he looked 'weird'. I remember telling my children to go and say hello because Gary was a lovely guy. After that first meeting, my youngest kids would rush out the door to say hello and greet Gary and my brother. We talked a lot about how its always a good idea to get to know people but you should never 'judge a book by his cover'. Gary had a kind heart and he will be sadly missed by many. My second funeral today was for my dentist Stuart Edwards...known to everyone who knew him as "Stuey". I say that he was my dentist but he was so much more than that. My family first came to know Stuey when my eldest brother joined Scouts, I was maybe 5 at the time. Stuey was pretty much involved in every committee and organisation on the Coast, at the time when the Coast was a very small community indeed. I hated going to the dentist, as pretty much everybody did, but it was much easier to deal with knowing your dentist would give you a big hug and rub your arm in comfort when he knew that you hated having the needles. Stuey had only met my husband on a few occasions, one being when I forced my husband to have a dental check up after having spent many years avoiding the task. Yet every occasion I had an appointment he always asked me 'say hello to Geoff for me'...or he would have a story or a joke he would want me to relay to Geoff. I loved that he looked after me when I was a young girl and then took care of my own children when they came along. It absolutely touched my heart when Stuey came to my father's funeral, that was a true testament to the fact that he was a lifelong family friend. He was a gorgeous and caring man who I will remember with love in my heart. It was comforting today to see his wife, four sons and many grandchildren crying and laughing remembering this wonderful man. I am sure if Stuey had a comment to make about his own death it would be that he lived life with no regrets and lived life to its fullest. So today has been a very emotional day for me, and one that has made me reflect on my own life and family. Who would be there at my funeral and what will I be remembered for? All those things I stress about on a daily basis really seem insignificant. The important message is to love one another, show your appreciation and be thankful for every day we have. I will hug my children and my husband extra tight tonight and be thankful we have each other.