When Lena Todd, an engineer, is posted to Pilbara to work on a huge construction project she says good-bye to the comfort of city life to reluctantly take on the challenge of working with 350 highly charged testosterone men.

Lena has something to prove. She is dealing with a failed relationship and a belief that she earnt her degree under false pretences. The circumstances around this is revealed gradually throughout the story leaving the reader guessing as to what really happened.

Lena has to deal with earning respect and approval from her male colleagues, and put up with their shonky behaviour, while impressing the client, Dan, who hides a harrowing secret. Lena falls for Dan complicating both their professional and personal relationship.

Entanglements and misunderstandings cause complications to increase for Lena along with getting caught up in other people’s problems.

Issues escalate on the project, and desperately wanting to believe in herself, she takes on a leadership role.

Eager to please, Lena doesn’t want to repeat the mistakes of the past but obstacles keep getting thrown in her way.

Loretta Hill draws on her own engineering experiences to paint a colourful world of heat, dust, tight deadlines and challenges of working away from family. She creates a sense of community of interesting characters who have to deal with isolation, but do their best to find something to laugh about (even if it’s at someone else’s expense).

There was one character who annoyed me and that was Carl. Carl was an obnoxious and impatient man whose every second word began with the letter ‘f’. After a while this became tiresome, although towards the end he did start to modify his behaviour because he wanted to impress a lady.

Having recently read The Girl in the Yellow Vest, there were a number of similarities with The Girl in Steel-Capped Boots including separate court cases which appeared in both books.

The Girl in Steel-Capped Boots was an entertaining read.

The sequel, The Girl in the Hard Hat, picks up the story and I’m looking forward to reading what adventures Lena and Dan get up to while they fall hopelessly in love (hopefully!).

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