Return to Rosalee Station, romantic fiction based on a real-life situation, opens with an appealing heart-wrenching poem written to Matt by his wife Sarah.
The scenario is so easily set by Mandy Magro in a straightforward, emotional, easy to follow style. She launches immediately into the present day of Malanda station in Far North Queensland where Matt has finally sought medical assistance for his behaviour.
From here the reader is transported back eight years to Rosalee Station in Queensland where adoration, love, physical attraction and romance is beautifully expressed in the regional setting. A perfect scene is then painted of a marriage proposal between a perfect couple who will take up their seven years of harmonious, gratifying life on their own property at Malanda.
They return to Rosalee Station for a vacation with their adored six-year-old daughter Eve. Meet Matts’ family; Steve his father, Judy his mother and Slim.
After this quick look at Rosalee, the reader is taken once again to the present, to Malanda. It is almost twelve months since that tragic vacation. Their marriage is falling apart. Empathy is established equally for both Matt and Sarah as their innermost anguish, anger, hurt, yearnings and feelings are revealed.
However, I confess that I did want to jump into the book and give Matt a really good shake and talking to. His poor communication is abominable and Sarah is the last to know that he has made all his arrangements to return to Rosalee Station where he hopes to ‘sort’ himself out leaving her alone at a time when she needs him so badly. Sarah feels abandoned but does have family close by. She fears losing him but also feels the benefit of his departure.
Will their marriage survive? Will each survive? Can they re-capture those feelings for one another?
This story is told with expert detail and knowledge of life on two completely different stations. I love the way the author jumps by chapters between the two stations with clear headings for each. This makes for an effortless read that never loses its flow.
Most readers will become involved in questioning how one would react if faced with the same adversity and situations.
An easy read told with an unblemished depiction of day by day, and, often, hour by hour life. A slow build-up that leaves the reader waiting for something dramatic to happen with either Matt or Sarah. Something has to give in this struggle.
Return to Rosalee Station, by Mandy Magro is available in printed or digital editions from the publisher, HQ Fiction.