Book Review – Dear Banjo – Sasha Wasley

DB 1000 wideOh my god, this book! I fell hard for this one!

I read well into the early hours of the morning and as soon as I woke up, ignored all the work I had to do and powered through to the end.

Let’s start with the setting. The landscapes were completely mesmerising. I hate the heat and yet I found myself yearning to be amongst the red dust and Kimberley canyons. I’ve never set foot on a farm but this book made me feel like I’d lived there my whole life.

This entire story revolves around the concept of humane and sustainable farming and that’s a subject that should be talked about more often. It’s sad that most people have no idea how our food reaches our plate and this book shows us the first steps into a better future in a way that’s interesting and never forceful.

The characters, oh the characters! Banjo’s drive and dedication was inspiring throughout the whole story. When it comes to love she’s flawed but that only made her feel more real to me and her awareness of those faults made it impossible to hold it against her.

And Tom is the ultimate nice guy, who always does the right thing and never loses his cool and yet rather than that making him dull he’s even more lovable.

I’d give this book more than 5 stars if that was an option!

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Dear Banjo by Sasha Wasley – New Release

Sasha Wasley is one of my best writing buddies and over the past two years I’ve watched her work tirelessly on her books. She has an amazing talent for creating living, breathing characters no matter the age or genre. It’s so exciting to see such a huge launch come to life with the release of Dear Banjo, the first in a rural romance series.

Make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom to read the excerpt!

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They were best friends who were never meant to fall in love – but for one of them, it was already way too late.

Willow ‘Banjo’ Paterson and Tom Forrest were raised on neighbouring cattle stations in the heart of the Kimberley. As young adults, sharing the same life dreams, something came between them that Willow cannot forget. Now ten years have passed since she’s even spoken to Tom.

When her father falls ill, Willow is called home to take over the running of the family property, Paterson Downs. Her vision for a sustainable, organic cattle station is proving hard to achieve. She needs Tom’s help, but is it too late, and all too complicated, to make amends?

Tom’s heartfelt, decade-old letters remain unopened and unmentioned between them, and Willow must find the courage to finally read them. Their tattered pages reveal a love story like no other – and one you’ll never forget.

Dear Banjo is a wildly romantic and utterly captivating story about first love and second chances from an exciting new Australian author.

 

Buy Links

Dear Banjo is now available in paperback and e-book editions. Visit your local bookstore or department store to pick up a copy. Some purchase links are below or search your favourite outlet.

About the Author

Sasha Wasley was born and raised in Perth, Western Australia.

She has completed a PhD in cultural theory and loves nature, Jane Austen and puns.

Sasha is a farming wannabe, with a passion for animals and the land. Although she’s in her forties now, she still wants a pony.

Her debut novel, a young adult paranormal, was published in 2014. Today, she lives and writes in the Swan Valley wine region with her partner and two daughters, surrounded by dogs, cats and chickens.

Sasha writes mystery, paranormal and young adult novels as S.D. Wasley.

Follow Sasha

Excerpt from Chapter 1

Somehow she managed to pack up the entire apartment overnight. On the way to the airport the next morning, Willow got the taxi driver to drop in at Tanya’s place. Her friend was still in her pyjamas when Willow gave her the keys to her apartment and a couple of hundred dollars. Tanya tried to refuse the money but Willow pushed it into her hand.

‘No, Tan, I’ve booked professional cleaners and I need you to pay them for me. Keep whatever’s left over as a thanks. And could you possibly go in and get rid of the boxes I’ve left behind? You can have anything from them or just donate it all to charity. And then if you could just drop the keys off to the real estate agent, I’ll be grateful forever.’

Tanya nodded and her eyes went a little glassy. ‘You’re really going, aren’t you? For good, I mean.’

‘Yeah. Going home at last. I can’t believe I stayed in the city this long.’

Tears spilled down Tanya’s cheeks. ‘I’m going to miss you.’

‘Oh, Tan. You should come visit.’ Willow hugged her. ‘I’ll stay in touch.’

‘It’s not the same,’ Tanya sobbed.

‘I’ll call you in a couple of days, okay?’

Tanya nodded and gave her another tearful hug before letting Willow leave.

Jeez, Willow thought as she ran back to the taxi. Shows of emotion had never been her thing. Okay, she was moving a couple of thousand kilometres away, and she’d miss seeing Tanya at work, but surely it wasn’t worth crying over.

A memory of her sessions with a psychologist surfaced. Willow, you tend to hold people at arm’s length. Why don’t you try letting people in a little more? Willow snapped her attention back to the present, logging into the power company’s website on her phone to cancel her account.

She checked in for her flight and paid an exorbitant amount for her excess baggage before watching it glide away on the conveyer belt – the sum total of her adult life in two large suitcases. No, she remembered. 3700 square kilometres, 6500 head of cattle, a ground­breaking, humane, organic beef operation. That would be the sum total of her adult life.

She settled into her seat and thanked the heavens she’d been placed next to a young fly-in-fly-out type, probably contracted to the Herne River catchment project. He was already plugged into his tablet and watching a show involving zombies, so she wouldn’t have to talk to anyone during the flight. She wanted to write a to-do list. As soon as they were in the air she reached into her bag for a note­pad and her hand met something unfamiliar. Not her notepad.

Tom’s letters.

Willow considered them, her heart rate bumping up all over again. Wouldn’t it almost be an invasion of Tom’s privacy to read them now, so long after he’d intended her to? Maybe those sleeping dogs should just be left to lie?

Yes, she would bin them all – drop them into the roving rubbish bag the next time the steward came around.

But she would be living next door to the Forrests again once she got home. By now, Tom would soon be taking over Quintilla, just as she was about to do with Paterson Downs. Their families were as close as ever. She’d need to resume some kind of relationship with Tom Forrest, no matter how difficult the initial patching up phase would be.

Maybe she could use this three-hour flight from Perth to Mount Clair to read all of Tom’s letters at last. She hadn’t even given the poor guy a chance after looking at the first couple. She’d been so absorbed in her own pain; grappling with the panic she felt every time she thought about what he’d done. Perhaps there had been an apology in one of those letters – an apology she should have acknowledged by now. A retraction of that awful moment when he’d said those words . . .

Tom’s handwriting was scrawled across the front of the topmost envelope – always familiar, no matter how long it had been. Willow took a shaky breath. Seven-thirty in the morning was a little early for a stiff drink, so she requested a coffee and pulled out the first two letters; the ones she’d opened and read ten years earlier.

 

Dear Banjo,

Happy New Year. I guess you’re settled in at the student hall by now. You sure went early. The other kids who got in aren’t leaving until February. I don’t know where you’re staying so I asked Beth to send this on to you. You might have heard I’m probably not going to take up my offer of a place at uni. I’m thinking I’ll defer my course – for now, anyway. Dad’s not fazed. He won’t have to hire extra help this way, not to mention the savings on the tuition fees. Mum’s not overly happy but I keep telling her it’s only for the year. She asks a lot of questions. Not really sure what else to say to you, Banjo. It’s weird without you. Whenever I’m on the quad I turn towards Patersons before I remember you’re not there any more. I keep thinking I’ll see you at the eastern gate, sitting on Rusty, ready for a fenceline race. You knew I’d always beat you but you’d have a go anyway. So, yep. Really weird. You’ve always just been there. I guess it doesn’t quite compute yet. Take care of yourself in the big city, okay?

Tom

P.S. We should probably try to sort this mess out.

 

Cover Reveal – Fallout (The Incorruptibles Book Two)

Fallout (The Incorruptibles Book 2)

by S.D. Wasley

Book Release Date: March 24, 2016

Buy Links

Pre-order now for auto-delivery to your Kindle on March 24, 2016.

Cover Revealed

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Blurb

Even when love seems unbreakable, it can still be battered, distorted—damaged beyond repair.

There’s only one thing Frankie yearns for these days, and that’s to share the gift that makes Cain so extraordinary. But no matter how inferior she feels, she’s determined to help the man she loves with his secret rescues, hoping that one day she will access a higher power of her own.

The one thing she knows for sure is that nothing will ever come between her and Cain again.

Then a stranger arrives in their midst, disrupting the solid loyalties in Cain’s group. This man has the very thing Frankie needs to unlock her powers, but the price is higher than she could have dreamed.

Can Frankie and Cain’s love survive the fallout?

 

Fallout is book 2 in the new adult paranormal romance series, The Incorruptibles.

♥♥ Bonus: Sign up to S.D. Wasley’s VIP Reader’s Club for a Fallout Preview Scene ♥♥

 

Add on Goodreads.

Downfall SD Wasley – Release Blitz

Congratulations on another brilliant book release, SD Wasley! I absolutely loved this book and you can check out my ARC review here.

OUT NOW!

Downfall (The Incorruptibles Book 1)

By S.D. Wasley

Release Date: January 7, 2016

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Buy Links

99c release special!

Summary

From Amazon bestselling author S.D. Wasley comes her first work of new adult paranormal romance perfect for lovers of Lauren Kate’s Fallen and the Richelle Mead’s Bloodlines series.

Blurb

Frankie’s cousin wants her to do three things this year:

  1. Lose her inhibitions
  2. Do something spectacularly stupid
  3. Fall madly in love

Travelling was Frankie’s life. As the daughter of a big-name evangelist, she’s been able to feed her hunger for new sights throughout most of her teenage years. Then a hushed-up scandal gets her thrown off the tour circuit and stuck at her uncle’s house in the town of Augur’s Well.

Forced to repeat her failed senior year, it looks like a dismal existence for Frankie—until she’s invited to the bizarre meeting place of four mismatched people … and falls hard for the fascinating, secretive Cain Aleister.

Furtive meetings in an underground chamber … Latin words carved into a stone wall … intense desire … and a secret so elusive she’ll do almost anything to bust it open. Until now, Frankie never believed in grand passions—but that’s not the only one of her beliefs about to implode right before her eyes.

Looks like Frankie’s going to score three for three.

Teaser

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Excerpt

I had to touch him on his bike, to press my arms and thighs around him so I wouldn’t fall off. He was solid. I don’t know what I’d expected but, for some reason, that surprised me. I felt fear as well as something else I didn’t understand, something that made me tremble all over. I told myself it was just the exhilaration of speeding along the highway with the cooling wind rushing past my arms. He didn’t ride towards civilisation but took us even further beyond Gaunt House ruins. I had no idea how long we were out there but it must have been a long ride because the light started to change. I wondered if Cain could feel how hard my heart was thumping with it pressed against his back like that. When we finally arrived back the others’ cars were at the ruin. He cut the engine as we coasted to a halt. I let my arms fall reluctantly but stayed where I was.

“Where did you go, when you went out the other night?”

I felt Cain go tense and it took him a moment to answer. “What do you mean?”

“And last week. Where did you go? What’s the big secret?” I twisted around him, trying to see his face.

When he glanced down at me I knew for certain I was right. There was a secret. I nudged his back with my shoulder.

“I don’t know what …” he said, his tone mechanical.

My frustration surged. “I’m not going to let it go. You’ve invited me back here so what’s the secret? I bet the other three know. Tell me!” He didn’t answer. “We can do this the easy way or the hard way.” I shocked myself with this tough guy attitude. “Are you choosing the hard way?”

Cain was startled, too. “What are you going to do?”

I just slipped off the seat, leaving him to put the bike on its stand and follow me into the ruin.

“Francesca!”

I heard from his hurried footsteps that he wanted to talk to me before we went inside but I didn’t trust myself not to betray what I was feeling; this big … huge … massive desire, just barely disguised by frustration. I knew the other three were inside. It would be safe in there. We wouldn’t be able to have this conversation anymore. I just needed to make it inside before he caught up to me. After a swift clamber down the ladder I rushed blindly for the door but somehow Cain caught my hand to stop me an instant before I threw the door open.

Francesca.” He breathed my name warm against my neck.

A hot, uncomfortable flush hit me when Liz, Owen, and Jude saw my hand caught in Cain’s, although he made an attempt to pull his away. Too late. They’d seen our breathless awkwardness, dishevelled hair, and tangled fingers.

Praise for Downfall…

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Author’s VIP Readers’ Club

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