Ballet for Men in Gumboots by Hailey Roussin-Guillemot

Ballet for men in gumboots

Jack knows a lot about growing oysters; after all, they’re simple creatures. He’s not a fan of complications, which is probably why he’s thirty eight and still single the day his brother asks for a favour. Jack heads for a small coastal town where an oyster farmer with a grudge is planning revenge. It’s got other oyster farmers worried; what goes in the water effects them all. Slowly, Jack gathers information from the people he meets in the town, but it’s a risky business not knowing who’s watching you. There’s the dodgy Caretaker, the horny Chef, the alcoholic Barber, and the boss’s wife…well, you’ll find out soon enough.

Knee deep in mud, working for a maniac, with only his old dog for company, Jack thinks it’s about time life threw him a bone. When Rose joins the houseboat community where Jack lives, it’s almost more than he can handle. I mean, a man has needs too, right? He wants more than rugby, beer, and fart jokes (they’re unavoidable round here). As Jack nears the end of his investigation and discovers the truth, Rose becomes tangled in the plot for revenge. Jack can’t leave until she is safe, and anyway, he wants her to leave with him. Jack’s not a fighter, he’s a stick-in-the-mud. Maybe that’s why he loves growing oysters.

Although a light-hearted work of fiction, this book is packed with information on how an oyster farm works and what it’s like to work on one. Caution: contains Kiwisims, swear words, and gumboots.

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