Trouble is My Business
Olivia Grace, recently retired teen PI, has her priorities sorted. Pass first-year law, look after her little sister, and persuade her parents to come back from a Nepali monastery to resume … well, parenting. But after Olivia’s friend Abbey goes missing in Byron Bay, she can’t sit back and study Torts. It’s time to go undercover as hippy-chick Nansea, in hippy-chic Byron Bay: hub of influencers and international tourism, and home of yoga, surfing and wellness culture, against a breathtaking backdrop, a short drive from Olivia’s Gold Coast home.
Olivia’s looking for answers, with the help of her stash of disguises, the PI skills her irresistible ex-boss Rosco taught her … and a nose for trouble. Her suspects include a hard-core surfer who often argued with Abbey in the surf, a charismatic cult leader and an acrobatic botany student. And then there’s Rosco, officially assigned to the case, and proving impossible to avoid.
Lisa Walker’s second Olivia Grace novel is another rip-roaring excursion into madcap sunshine noir, with nods to Nancy Drew and Sherlock Holmes, and a flavour of Veronica Mars meets Elmore Leonard.
'I loved being swept up in this mystery. A wonderful combination of comical, high-stakes and genuine.’ – Emily Gale, author of 'We are out with Lanterns'
Forget Sherlock Holmes and Nancy Drew, teen PI Olivia Grace going deep undercover as Nansea is everything I never knew I needed. Trouble is my Business kept me reading, guessing and laughing late into the night.
- R.W.R McDonald, author of 'The Nancys'
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The Girl with the Gold Bikini
Short listed for the Davitt Awards in the
Young Adult and Debut Crime categories
Whenever I see a girl with a gold bikini, I think of Princess Leia. Here on the Gold Coast, gold bikinis are common, so I think of Princess Leia a lot.
Eighteen-year-old Olivia Grace has deferred her law degree and ducked out of her friends' gap-year tour of Asia. Instead, she's fulfilling her childhood dream of becoming a private investigator, following in the footsteps of Nancy Drew and Veronica Mars - who taught her everything she knows, including a solid line in quick-quipping repartee, the importance of a handbag full of disguises, and a way of mixing business with inconvenient chemistry.
Playing Watson to the Sherlock of her childhood friend, detective agency owner Rosco (once the Han Solo to her Princess Leia), Olivia pursues a routine cheating husband case from the glitzy Gold Coast to Insta-perfect Byron Bay, where she faces yoga wars, dirty whale activism, and a guru who's kind of a creep.
Olivia Grace is a teenage screwball heroine for the #metoo era, and The Girl with the Gold Bikini is a body-positive detective romp, rich with pop-culture pleasures.
Praise for The Girl with the Gold Bikini
'Lisa Walker's second YA novel gives us a fun new spin on Nancy Drew and 'girl detectives'. It will absolutely appeal to readers who love the mystery genre, with a relatable contemporary crossover ... an engaging, action-packed, fast-paced book - with many end-of-chapter cliffhangers. The issue of appearance discrimination is thoughtfully considered.' - Books & Publishing
Happiness (Happy) Glass has been a loner since moving to Brisbane four months ago. She still dreams about living in Paris with her best friend Rosie after they finish Year Twelve. But Rosie hasn't been terribly reliable lately.
Happy’s social life starts looking up when she wins a French Tourism Board essay competition and meets good-looking tourism intern Alex (‘Alex One’). She also encounters eccentric Professor Tanaka and her gardener, a female Alex (‘Alex Two’) who recruit Happy in their fight against Paris Syndrome - an ailment that afflicts over-zealous and idealistic fans of Paris.
Happy pursues her love of all things French, but then sex messes things up when she ends up kissing both Alexes. Soon neither of them is speaking to her and she suddenly goes from having two Alexes to none …
For fans of John Green, this funny and poignant coming-of-age story is about that crazy little thing called love. And how you can find it anywhere.
Paris Syndrome is a charming coming-of-age story for ages 14+ and definitely for those who love all things French and dream of the romantic city of Paris. But it’s also a very poignant story of divorce, grief and a young girl finding her feet in a new, romantic and increasingly adult world.
Told with light humour, vivid imagery and evolving characters sporting fascinating back stories, YA novelist Lisa Walker has woven a multi-layered story of love and loss... Highly recommended.
Allison Paterson, Magpie Magazine
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 …
For me, Melt is a fabulous little melting pot itself, of humour, science, topical debate, an amazing location, the idea of being true to yourself and finding out what you really want, and of course a little pinch of romance. I wish I could find more books just like this one!
It's a lovely romp of a RomCom, involving Climate Change, Mistaken Identities and Antarctica!
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki on Twitter
Arkie's Pilgrimage to the Next Big Thing
Now optioned for film!
Have you ever felt the need to start again? Dumped by text message, Edie flees Sydney for the refuge of her childhood home, taking only a wilting bonsai as a reminder of her failure. But in this small coastal town, shy, awkward Edie has always lived in the shadow of her surf champion father. How can she move on from her ex - and from her past? Her best friend and life-coach, Sally, is full of dubious advice, but Edie finds there are many ways to mess things up all by herself. A new-found talent for erotic writing, a job drawing crab larvae, unrequited lust for a professor with hidden depths and a maddening musician with troubles of his own add to her swag of problems. And then things get complicated ... A tender and witty tale about finding your voice, falling in love ... and crab sex.
‘the voice Walker uses is authentic and her story is enriched by hard-won psychological insights.’
The Sydney Morning Herald
‘ … reaches out beyond romance to social commentary. Much to enjoy.’
Sex, Lies and Bonsai
'I watch the highway go by and ponder my situation. I am on the run from my husband's divorce lawyer, my mojo is still missing in action and my demon ex-lover is lurking . . . But, all things considered, my pilgrimage is going well . . .'
Arkie used to be a trendspotter, running a successful business advising companies on 'the next big thing'. Until she lost her marriage and her mojo along with it. Her eccentric new friend Haruko suggests a pilgrimage in Japan. But funds are tight, so instead Arkie's going on a very Australian trip, to all the 'Big Things'. With Haruko as her guide, magic is everywhere. A Buddha appears next to the Big Redback, the Big Macadamia rises from the jungle like a lost temple and inside the Big Shell she can hear a tinkling voice, reminding her of the child she never had. As her improbable adventure unfolds, realisation dawns: could it be that, despite her celebrated foresight, Arkie's been missing what was right before her eyes?
A delightfully funny and inspiring novel about a very modern pilgrimage, and one woman's chance to rediscover what she's lost.
This is a funny, charming and thoughtful kind of chick lit, full of witty one-liners and intriguing minor characters, realistic about the vicissitudes of love and desire.
Lisa Walker’s charming storytelling takes the reader on a Dorothy-type journey through Oz, full of quirky characters, gentle mysteries, significant coincidences, a little surrealism and some quiet philosophical pondering.’
Cassandra Daley has never given much though to wildlife until she loses a PR war with a potoroo.
Sacked and disgraced, she flees the city. Not for a tree change, just a bolt hole. But small-town Beechville has other plans for her.
Feral pigs, a philosopher frog and a town with a secret – could things get worse? Add one man who has the sexiest way with maps she’s ever seen and they soon do. Her best friend Jessica thinks she’s been brain-washed by an RM Williams cult, and Jessica could be right. Can Cassandra reinvent herself or will she always be a liar bird?
'... a fresh, lively voice that brings humour and
originality to the "women's fiction" genre.'
Northern Rivers Echo