book reviews

Book Review: The Callahan Split

The Callahan Split Lisa Heidke JFGibson

Disclaimer: I was offered an advanced ebook of this novel for review purposes courtesy of Net-Galley.

Lisa Heidke is one of Australia’s best-known authors with books such as Lucy Springer Gets Even, Claudia’s Big Break and It Started With A Kiss under her belt. Lisa’s latest release, The Callahan Split, due out August 1st, is another great read to add to her list.

Annie and Samantha Callahan are successful doubles tennis players and Australia’s darlings of the tennis world having won Gold at the London Olympics. However success, pressure and love take its toll on the girls and their relationship. When Annie falls in madly and unexpectedly in love with her new boyfriend and decides to pursue a singles career, Samantha is left devastated and things go downhill very rapidly from there – for both sisters.

Told mainly through the eyes of Samantha and two other secondary, yet still important characters, the book explores the themes of family, abandonment, love and ones purpose in life; all with Lisa’s trademark wit and humour.

Being a big tennis fan myself the backdrop for the story naturally caught my eye. And Lisa certainly captures the essence of the tennis world perfectly. From the pressure, dedication and hard work required to stay on top, right through to the glitz and glamour as well as the media scrutiny that surrounds the sport at the highest level.

The book is fast paced and moves quickly through the events as they unfold, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t done well. Lisa, as always, has the ability to capture the reader and make you want to turn the page to find out what happens next. And there is a lot that happens next! Drama, action, love, lust, twists and turns; it’s all here.

I really enjoyed that Lisa chose to take the point of view of Samantha although there were some times in the second half of the book where I wanted her to delve deeper into Samantha rather than brush over underlying storylines. Perhaps if I were to pick a weakness, and it would be very nitpicky of me, it would be that Lisa should have explored Samantha’s emotional responses a little but further.

At times too, I really wanted to know what Annie was thinking!  I thought there were a few unanswered questions, but maybe that was intentional – will there be a sequel told from Annie’s point of view? Mmmmmmm, maybe?

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the book. It is a light, casual read that is easy to pick up from where you last left – which was great considering I read it during school holidays.

If you’re a Lisa Heidke fan, you certainly won’t be disappointed. And if you’re not, you will want to read her back catalogue after reading The Callahan Split.

Are you a Lisa Heidke fan?