I saw this book at Big W and recognised the author as one of the couples from one of my favourite shows The Farmer Wants A Wife. In the mood for a good winter read I grabbed it and read it all in a weekend.
Of all the couples from The Farmer Wants A Wife, I thought that Jo and Rob seemed one of the most genuine true love matches. I think this has something to do with the fact that they were both out of the early/mid 20s demographic and had some life experience and a clear picture of what they wanted in a partner.
Right from the start this book was easy to read. I was interested from the first page to last, without having to skip through sections like you sometimes do with autobiographies. Jo had a great childhood with a close, loving family in suburban Melbourne. A talented gymnast, she became very body conscious when a coach thoughtlessly told her that she would need to watch her weight when she was still very young. Unfortunately this comment stayed with Jo and she later succumbed to bullimia, a disease that would grip her for more than a decade. Despite becoming a talented photographer and having a close circle of friends and the ongoing support and love of her family Jo was in an abusive relationship for many years. She also suffered from depression during this time.
I remember being struck by what an outgoing and bubbly person Jo seemed to be when she appeared on screen, so it was such a surprise to hear that she struggled with self esteem and body issues for so long. It definitely goes to show that you don't know what goes on behind the scenes. But more importantly it also shows that really big life hurdles can be overcome with the love and support of the right partner. Rob has obviously been a hugely steadying and calming influence for Jo - what a lucky girl to find such a man!
As well as being very inspired by Jo's story about how she turned her life around, I was very interested to hear about the behind the scenes stuff that goes into making a reality TVshow. It's really amazing just how many hours of footage go into making just one hour of TV each week.
Out Of The Blue is a wonderful book. It is a very inspiring story for those struggling to deal with depression or an eating disorder and shows that with the right mental attitude you can overcome anything. Definitely worth a read, even if you don't watch The Farmer Wants A Wife.