Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Book Review & Giveaway: Red Dirt Country by Fleur McDonald

Red Dirt Country
Fleur McDonald

Publisher: Allen & Unwin 
Publication date: 31st March 2020
Genre: Contemporary Fiction / Rural Crime
Pages: 392
RRP: $29.99 AUD
Format read: Paperback
Source: courtesy of the publisher via dmcprMedia 

Returning to Perth after a near-fatal undercover case in outback Queensland, Dave Burrows, now a Detective Senior Constable in the stock squad, receives an ultimatum from his deeply unhappy wife, Melinda.

Before Dave and Mel's problems can be resolved, Dave is sent to the far north of Australia on a stock theft investigation. He finds two cattle stations deep in a complex underbelly of racial divide, family secrets, long-repeated lies, kidnapping and murder.

Facing one of the biggest challenges of his policing life and the heartbreaking prospect of losing his family, Dave can't imagine things getting worse. But there's a hidden danger, intent on revenge, coming right for him.  

In Red Dirt Country Fleur McDonald takes her readers to the heat, dust and isolation of far north Western Australia.

Home for the last six months recovering from a gunshot wound Dave Burrows is eager to commence his new job on the stock squad. His pregnant wife Melinda is not so keen for him to leave.

Through Melinda and Dave, marriage to a policeman is explored as Fleur McDonald gives a well rounded account of both party’s feelings. I could see that Dave and Melinda were very much in love but neither wanted to give in. Melinda’s fear of him dying was overwhelming her and Dave couldn’t let go of his dream job.

His first job is in far north WA on a cattle stealing investigation. Under the guidance of Bob Holden we follow a thorough investigation and rookie Dave has a lot to learn from his superior. Fleur McDonald’s extensive knowledge of the cattle farms, how they are run and how cattle could be stolen amazed me.
Red Dirt Country has an intricate plot however it flows so easily and naturally proving McDonald is a master at outback story telling.

Dave isn’t as front line of the danger in this story as he was in Without a Doubt and his boss and mentor, Bob, and aboriginal lease holder, Kevin, shine in this story as much as Dave.

With themes of racial divide, bad blood handed down through generations, breaking down long held perceptions of crooked cops and a generation trying to make a better future for all Red Dirt Country is an engrossing and credible read.

The third book featuring Det Dave Burrows reads well as a stand alone with a new investigation introduced and wrapped up.
A cheeky little teaser at the end has me eager for the next book. And I think it will be a breath-holder!


My rating   5/5

photo credit: Goodreads
After growing up on a farm near Orroroo in South Australia, Fleur McDonalds first job was jillarooing in the outback. She has been involved in agriculture all her life, including helping manage a 8000-acre station foe twenty years. Today she and her two children, along with a Jack Russell and her energetic kelpie, Jack, live in Esperance, Western Australia,

Fleur is the author of 14 bestselling novels and two children's books.

Allen & Unwin have generously offered a paperback copy of Red Dirt Country to two of my readers.
Please enter via the form below.  


  1. I'm a big fan of Fiona Palmer. 5 ⭐ is a fabulous recommendation.

    1. Yes that's what I meant, my brain isn't working very well this week. I have all of Fleur's novels on my shelf.

  2. Great sounding book and giveaway

  3. Nicki Edwards The Peppercorn Project is a book i have read over and so touching close to home for me. God given gift.

  4. Don't think I've read Fiona Palmer so fingers crossed. Thank you.

  5. I haven't read any of Fleur McDonalds book but they sound great.

  6. My previous comment should have read... I have never read Fleur McDonald so fingers crossed. Thank you

    1. No worries Donna. I’m sure Fiona would enjoy the mentions. 😆

  7. Storyline sounds great, thank you for the chance to read it