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The Homestead Girls

Narrated by: Caroline Lee
Length: 9 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (25 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Moving to the outback to join the Flying Doctors will change Billie's life forever.

After her teenage daughter, Mia, falls in with the wrong crowd, Dr Billie Green decides it's time to leave the city and return home to Far Western NSW. When an opportunity to pursue her childhood dream of joining the Flying Doctor Service comes along, she jumps at the chance. Flight Nurse Daphne Prince - who is thrilled to have another woman join the otherwise male crew - and their handsome new boss, Morgan Blake, instantly make her feel welcome.

Just out of town, drought-stricken grazier Soretta Byrnes has been struggling to make ends meet and has opened her homestead to boarders. Tempted by its faded splendour and beautiful outback setting, Billie, Mia and Daphne decide to move in, and the four of them are soon joined by eccentric 80-year-old Lorna Lamerton.

The unlikely housemates are cautious at first, but soon they are offering each other frank advice and staunch support as they tackle medical emergencies, romantic adventures and the challenges of growing up and getting older. But when one of their lives is threatened, the strong friendship they have forged will face the ultimate test....

©2015 Fiona McArthur (P)2020 Bolinda Publishing

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Romance is lacking but Flying Doctor Service is alive and well.

The Homestead Girl's is a fascinating look at the Flying Doctor Service, the set up in Mica Ridge and some of the dangerous situations occurring in far flung places in the immense outback of Australia. I did not grow up in the outback but I still knew about this legendary service, it’s inception by the great John Flynn and the rigours of day to day life in the outback where medical intervention was non-existent until John Flynn's vision became a reality.

Of course this is a work of fiction but it is a wonderful look into the sophisticated service that has grown from the primitive beginnings in the early to mid 20th century.

It is also a look into the friendships and love of a disparate group of women who have come together in hard times and how they become integral to each other's lives. There is also romance, on two fronts, one front moving much faster than the other. The 'main' romance is very slow, with both parties circling each other warily, like wrestlers before they come together to grapple each other momentarily and then part again. The resolution of this quite painful dance does not take place until the last page of the main story and they are not even alluded to in the epilogue.

That was more than a little disappointing for me because as wonderful as the flying doctor story was, I do like the romance that usually accompanies Fiona McArthur's stories. So, if it’s a fully fledged romance you’re after, the Homestead Girls falls a little short.

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Aussie drama worth a read

This book is Australian to the core.
The place, the people, the work.
Turmoil and trouble bring people home to familiar surroundings.
I loved the comradeship, the thoughtfulness, the kindness.

I feel Australia has changed so-o much with the population boom over the years.
We no longer have this ideal.
It’s nice to read/listen to it and remember how it used to be and hopefully it remains in some places.