24 March 2015

Red Dirt Series Spotlight!

Welcome to Sutton Station: One of the world’s largest working farms in the middle of Australia – where if the animals and heat don’t kill you first, your heart just might.

Charlie Sutton runs Sutton Station the only way he knows how; the way his father did before him. Determined to keep his head down and his heart in check, Charlie swears the red dirt that surrounds him – isolates him – runs through his veins.

American agronomy student Travis Craig arrives at Sutton Station to see how farmers make a living from one of the harshest environments on earth. But it’s not the barren, brutal and totally beautiful landscapes that capture him so completely, it’s the man with the red dirt heart.

Please note: This book is set in Australia, using Australian English and lingo.
We have Charlie, a gay male that left the Station for college and to get away from his father and not to come back until his father’s passing a couple of year pervious. Every since then has been running the Station, crew and animals doing a better job than his father ever did. But it’s been a lonely couple of years and at this point he’s resigned himself to the fact that this is it, this is his life.  Then one day Travis shows up, in an exchange program from Texas. And all bets are off. Travis is showing him and making him feel things that he was sure he never would again. But in four weeks, Travis will be gone. Or will he?

So this is my first book by this author and I’ve heard wonderful things about this series, so I was really excited about reading it and had pretty high expectations. Unfortunately, it did not live up to the hype. It’s very well written and I found Charlie a strong character and determined to do anything for anyone no matter the cost. I loved Ma’ and her no mess no fuss attitude, George a good person to lean on, Travis kind of cute and enduring but no chemistry between all of them no comradely between the crew.  I did very much like reading about the land, the drive and didn’t feel like it was info overload.
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 Up until Travis arrived on his doorstep, Charlie had lived a very solitary life. He had surrounded himself with isolation; a couple million acres of red dirt, scorching sun and loneliness.

Six months on, winter has settled over the desert, and Charlie has the life he never dreamed possible. But living and working together, twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, for six months straight starts to take its toll.

Charlie is a stubborn, stubborn man, who tends to have more conversations in his head than what comes out his mouth, whereas Travis has no problem saying what’s on his mind. And even as they both struggle to communicate, struggle to make sense of need versus want, Charlie can see that he’s pushing Travis away - yet seems helpless to stop it.

When it all boils down to whether Travis should stay or go, maybe the decision won’t be theirs to make.
Book two picks up several months after book 1. Same characters, same station. As we found out at the end of book two, Travis decided to stay and everyone now knows that Travis and Charlie are a couple.

Charlie and Travis have settled into a comfortable life, running the Station and going about life.  And this book just gives us that over the months.  Going on the muster or tagging and sorting the cattle etc.

I have to say, it’s been a long time since I activity disliked a character but by about page 25 I was ready to slap Travis. Not sure what happened to him from bk 1 to now. But he turned into a ‘my way or the high way’, I’m right about everything, even if I’m wrong and I won’t apologize. Which in turned, turned Charlie into this no backbone, groveling fool, who station is it anyway? We did have some drama thrown in that helped picked up the pace of the book and allowed us to see a side of crew we missed before.  
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 Life for Charlie Sutton has never been better, or busier. With Travis now a permanent fixture of Sutton Station, a permanent fixture at Charlie’s side, Charlie’s convinced he couldn’t do anything on his ever-growing to-do list without him.

He can run a multimillion dollar cattle business, finish his degree, try and further the local beef industry, deal with staff issues, Ma’s failing health, and an attention-demanding wombat. He can even deal with an unexpected visitor and some shattering news.

He can deal with it all, as long as he has Travis.

But what happens when he doesn’t?

Red Dirt Heart 3 is the story of Charlie Sutton finally realising he can be the man Travis Craig deserves, even if he doesn’t have Travis. It’s a story of love, family, holding on, letting go and coming home.
Just like book two, this one is a continuation of the day and the life of Charlie, Travis and the rest of the gang.

We start by having Charlie and Travis coming back from holiday and meeting someone on the plane. Blake, a buyer for Woolworth’s beef suppliers, this chance meet leads to great things happening not only at the ranch. But then other emotional things happen in this book, Ma’ not doing well, Travis gets a call and Charlie’s world gets turned upside down, again.

So were the other book, we didn’t have much drama, we pilled it in this one. Everyone had a crisis going on. And yet I still didn’t feel anything for anyone? Travis is still manipulating Charlie, which is making him second guess everything and everyone. I did enjoy reading about the antics of the animals that’s a nice touch. We did get a pretty nice ending which should make book for fun.


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