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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Beyond Goyder’s Line: An Outback Tale of Murder, Mystery and Love is a work of fiction in the drama, suspense, and romance subgenres. It is suitable for the general reading audience and was penned by author Colleen Dumaine. The book follows teenager Bethany Friend as she and her family travel the dangerous outback to open a bakery in Farina, only to be attacked and left destitute en route. Taking up her father's role in opening the bakery, Bethany must integrate herself into the community as best she can, but when the remains of the murdered former baker are found, a new mystery comes to the fore.
If there’s a style of fiction that can get me to sit up and take notice, it’s a beautifully paced character study set against a backdrop of adversity and the step-by-step overcoming of that adversity. Author Colleen Dumaine has written a stellar tale of that very nature. Bethany is an excellent protagonist whose characterization naturally evolves throughout the story as the events of the narrative promote change and growth. Her time in Farina is a challenging one, but as the hurdles she overcomes help her grow as a person and the new friendships encourage her to develop even further, the adversity she faces in her first year seems to be the best thing that’s happened to her. They certainly prepare her to face the mystery waiting at the heart of Beyond Goyder’s Line. Overall, it's a clever whodunnit that will keep the reader guessing as Bethany and the people of Farina work toward the answer.