Thirteen Pearls, by Melaina Faranda

Out of the evening shadows two faces looked down at me. Both young men. Both good looking. One Eurasian face with olive skin and dark eyes. The other haloed by a wild mane of hair. He was trying not to laugh.
‘I’m fine,’ I said. I wanted to cry.

Edie Sparks has a dream. She wants to sail solo around the world. But first she needs to finish her boat and, for that, she needs money. So when her long lost uncle offers her a job babysitting his four year old son over the summer, she jumps at the chance.

Soon she is on a tiny island off the coast of Far North Queensland, battling a seemingly uncontrollable child and a sullen, controlling uncle. The only bright side of the island are the two workers – Kaito and Leon.

Thirteen Pearls , part of the Girlfriend Fiction series, is a pleasing blend of adventure, romance and personal development. Whilst Edie learns, through trial and error, to care for and control her young charge, she also learns a lot about herself. At the same time, the story is liberally sprinkled with humour, with Edie a wry first person narrator.

An absorbing read.

Thirteen Pearls (Girlfriend Fiction), by Melaina Faranda
Allen & Unwin, 2010

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