#aww2018 · 2018 Reviews · Antarctica · contemporary fiction · new release · romance

New Release Book Review: Melt by Lisa Walker

Title: Meltmelt small

Author: Lisa Walker

Published: May 2nd 2018

Publisher: Lacuna

Pages: 278

Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Romance

RRP: $27.50

Rating: 4 stars

Antarctica is getting hotter …

Summer Wright, hippie turned TV production assistant, organises her life down to the minute. And when her project-management-guru boyfriend, Adrian, proposes marriage — right on schedule — she will reach the peak of The Cone of Certainty.

At least, that’s the plan – until adventure-show queen Cougar Gale intervenes. Suddenly Summer is impersonating Cougar in Antarctica: learning glaciology and climate science on the fly, building a secret igloo, improvising scripts based on Dynasty, and above all trying not to be revealed as an impostor.

Summer finds it particularly hard to fool climate scientist Lucas Nilsson, who is babysitting the production crew. But Lucas is more focused on Adrian’s client Nathan Hornby — the science minister who thinks “climate science is crap” — and rumours of faked climate data.

With Adrian unexpectedly in Antarctica too, can Summer use her extreme project management skills to get Project Adrian back on track and make a success of “Cougar on Ice”? Was Lucas involved in the sudden disappearance of Minister Hornby during a blizzard? And what is The Krill Question anyway?

Antarctica — it gives you perspective …

My review:

If you are looking for a smart, modern day romance with a different slant, the buck stops with Melt, the latest novel from Australian author Lisa Walker. Melt is a crisp and snazzy tale that combines a pathway of self discovery, with a touch of romance, which is set against the broad backdrop of Antarctica. Melt is one out of the ordinary story that will be sure to touch your heart.

Melt features loveable lead Summer Wright. Summer is a hippy at heart, who works as a TV production assistant. Summer is convinced that everything is going right in her life, she is doing all the right things and her life will finally be complete, just as soon as her boyfriend Adrian proposes. But to Summer’s dismay, she got it completely wrong. Instead of proposing, Adrian breaks up with Summer and suddenly Summer ends up impersonating a high flying TV adventurer bound for Antarctica. It is quite the sea change, but Summer is determined to keep the game up. That is, until Summer meets Lucas. A talented climate scientist, Lucas is overseeing the television production in Antarctica that Summer unwittingly finds herself on. Lucas is no fool and he doesn’t believe in Summer’s farcade one bit. However, Lucas is just as distracted by client Nathan Hornby, who doesn’t agree with his climate science theories. To complicate matters further for our leads, Summer’s ex, Adrian arrives on the scene. Meanwhile, Summer thinks she might just be able to woo Adrian back into her arms. There is no doubt plenty is happening for the crew based in Antarctica in Lisa Walker’s new novel, Melt.

I was immediately drawn to Melt, by the main setting, which takes place in Antarctica, a region I have read very little about in the past, but I hope to rectify. I am also a fan of  author, Lisa Walker’s writing style, which is fresh, unique and engaging. I have enjoyed two books previously by Walker and I was keen to dive headfirst into Melt. My overall experience of this novel was one of joy, it was an absolute pleasure to read this original new novel from Lisa Walker.

At the heart of Melt is leading lady, Summer Wright. I loved Summer’s background and  idiosyncracies. It was great to see a lead that had her heart in all the right places, but she never seemed to pull it off or get things right! I felt sorry for Summer, especially when her thoughts of marriage were shut down by Adrian, it is perhaps the worst possible scenario! I did like how Summer took the bull by the horns and ended up in quite the predicament as a result! Although many of the tangles Summer gets herself into are laugh out loud moments, my heart went out to Summer. I wanted her to succeed and move on from the undeserving Adrian. Walker ensures that all our experiences with Summer are full bodied and thoroughly entertaining.

There is a dash of romance in this novel which I enjoyed. I liked the complications of the different love interests Walker employed within the novel. I developed quite the soft spot for Lucas and I hoped that he and Summer would be able to get their act together and make things happen! I won’t discuss this element of the story any further in case I spoil this delightful story for potential readers. What I will declare is I’m never short of amazed by Lisa Walker’s talent in the romance field, she knows inherently what works and it shines through in Melt.

Underneath the fun, frivolity, mix ups and new adventures is a much more series message to Melt. Walker opens our eyes to one of the most isolated and harsh terrains on planet earth, but it is also one of the most stunning locales in the world. I loved the bright descriptions of Antarctica, Walker does a very good job of capturing the rich sense of place of this locale. There are some memorable passages related to the scenery and wildlife in Antarctica which I appreciated very much, especially the penguin interludes. Running alongside this book is the issue of climate change, which  I found very insightful.

Melt proved to be quite the epic journey and I loved following the lead, Summer’s mishaps. I like where Walker took Summer by the close of the novel. I think it is important to mention the format of this novel, which struck me as clever, visually appealing and original. The chapter headings were just so quirky and reflective of the whole style of the novel. Interspersed between the verses of narrative in Melt are some great diagrams, giving us a fantastic insight into Summer’s personality. It was such a great little touch and perfectly encapsulates Lisa Walker’s signature style!

I’m so pleased this thoughtful novel eventually made its way into the world. Lisa Walker originally penned Melt as part of her master studies in creative writing. With a few tweaks and some drafting it has finally made its debut. Melt is a simply charming novel from cover to cover.

Melt by Lisa Walker was published on May 2nd 2018 by Lacuna Publishing. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.

To learn more about the author of Melt, Lisa Walker visit here

*I wish to thank Lisa Walker/Lacuna Publishing for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes.

Melt is book #44 of the Australian Women Writers Challenge

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