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Jul 30, 2014

Book Review: Outback Hearts by Susan Stoker

Title: Outback Hearts
Author: Susan Stoker
Publication Date: May 18, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Beau Coup Publishing


Sam never thought she'd actually be chosen for a reality show -- but next thing she knew, she was whisked away to Australia. Dealing with a producer willing to do whatever he had to do to make the show a hit, other women ready to cheat and lie to gain the attention of the bachelor, and a camera operator ready to catch her at her worst every time she turned around, absolutely nothing was as simple as it seemed on TV. Not to mention the pigs, killer rattlesnakes and shoveling manure. Sam wasn't sure she was going to make it through filming most days -- never mind find true love.

Alex never thought he'd be on a reality show, but how hard could being surrounded by beautiful women be? A lot harder than he'd thought. The producer changed the rules of the show behind his back, the women were nearly clawing at each other for his attention -- and that one contestant he couldn't get off his mind...

Can two people who are meant to be together manage to fight the catty contestants, crazy producer and find true love on a reality show in the Australian Outback?

Kayla's Thoughts:

For a girl who has watched her fair share of reality dating programs (grew out of that, thank God) I can honestly say that everything that is portrayed in this novel is of my EXACT opinion. The fru-fru women who somehow fall in love with the supposed bachelor on the first night, the cattiness and 180 changes between when they are with the guy and when they are not, and the DRAMA!!! Oh my goodness, the DRAMA! It makes my head want to explode. *KABOOM* But enough about that, let's continue on talking about this book.

I think one of my favorite parts of this book is the fact that Sam (I refuse to call her Sammi) is so different from the other women on the show. She is kind of a breath of fresh air. SPOILER ALERT!! I thought it was so cool how she saved the fish in one of the challenges. I mean, I absolutely love animals and cannot stand to see one hurt, but I wouldn't have even thought of that.

Sam stood out so perfectly from the other contestants. It emphasized her being a main character, and it also kind of showed true reality. Because in those kind of shows, it really does seem as if all they want are pretty people in front of the camera. "Makes for good television."

Sometimes, though, I facepalmed a little bit regarding Sam and how she handled some of the situations. But then I couldn't really fault her due to the explanations she gave and the reasoning behind some of her choices. They just made sense.

And Alex. I loved his some of his reactions. And from the start, I just knew the two were perfect for each other. Just the way he reacted to a certain story of Sam's, which he was really not supposed to hear, in the beginning of the competition made their connection instantly click in my head. Seriously, thinking back on it, I am kind of still gushing over how perfect they are.

AND THE PRODUCER, EDDIE! Oh lord I do not like that man... But him I will not talk about. You'll have to find out about him all on your own.


While reading this story, my only complaint was that writing wise it felt a bit bare to me. A bit simple. And throughout the story, until the very end, I felt it was a good book, but it didn't really amaze me. HOWEVER, when I finished, and while figuring out what to write in my review, I went on Facebook and found out that the second book having to do with a competition in Arizona, briefly mentioned in this book, was out. I flipped! Until that moment, I had not realized just how much I had enjoyed this book. And now, I still cannot stop thinking about it and about reading the next one. I have to know what is going to happen with this new couple.

I just really love this book.

Links for Book:

Author's Bio:

Susan Stoker has a heart as big as the state of Texas where she lives, but this all-American girl has also spent the last fourteen years living in Missouri, California, Colorado, and Indiana. She is quite the romantic and even met the love of her life on "Hotmail classified" before online dating and sites like even existed!

Susan has been reading romance novels since middle school and once crossed out the names of the main characters in a book and changed them to her own and to the name of her crush. She's been writing scenes for years, developing her unique writing style.

Susan loves writing, but her true passion is adopting dogs from rescue groups and shelters. Susan and her husband have had a total of nine "rescued" dogs since 2000, including a variety of basset hounds and bloodhounds. She has recently branched out and adopted a basset/terrier mix who acts more like a terrier than a basset (i.e. digging, eating a couch and being hyper). If you love romance and want to help her support adopting great dogs, be sure to check out her work.

Her first series, Beyond Reality, is a trilogy, with all three books in the series having Happily Ever After endings with no cliffhangers.

Links for Author:

1 comment:

  1. Author Susan StokerJuly 30, 2014 11:31 PM

    Thank you Kayla...and EDDIE is BACK in book 2 (and book 3). You'll have to read to see what trouble he's causing for the new couples! lol :)


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