Reviewed By  Grasshopper2       June 9, 2018


Author  Sally Seltmann

Distributor:       Booktopia/Amazon 
ISBN:                 9781760632878
Publisher:         Allen and Unwin
Release Date:   May 2018  


Narrated by the main character, this romantic story tells of a time in the life of Joni. She is twenty-one and just out of art school. She lives in a tiny apartment where she is working on compiling an art exhibition. Joni’s thoughts and feelings are described carefully, and reflect a young Australian girl beginning to make her way in the world. There are a great many issues that Joni ponders, among them is understanding the various characters that she works with, and why she is still a virgin at twenty-one!

We follow Joni as she spends her day painting, then gets ready for her job in a French Restaurant. The owner is a passionate woman who can be deeply personal and friendly, or snappy and cold. Our young artist views the male workers, the chef, the dishwasher, and assistant chef, as potential partners. Dave is a sweetie, and Joni fancies him, but one night she leaves her bag behind and returns to the restaurant to find Dave having sex with Lucy, the owner.

Joni’s best friend Annabelle is a singer- songwriter, who has been recognised for her talents overseas. She has returned home to Sydney for a break and stays at Joni’s place, sleeping on the couch. The girls have been best friends since school, so at first it is no imposition. As the weeks go by, Joni begins to long for a little solitude, but an interview for Annabelle has been set up at the Harland, the restaurant where Joni works. She has been told that a photographer who is filming for the interview is single and cute.  However, he is unable to make the session, so Joni will never find out.

It is lovely to hear the thoughts that bemuse this young lady. They are quite private and we share in the exhilaration of her late night bike rides home from work, as she rides up hill and views Sydney Harbour at its sparkling best. We also share her fears as she walks down the dark path at night at work, saying, and “There are no ghosts.”

During the story, Joni learns that characters have many aspects and should not be accepted at face value. It is just another lesson in life for this quirky young woman.