MONICA MCINERNEY grew up in a family of seven children in the Clare Valley wine region of South Australia. She has worked in children's television, arts marketing, the music industry, public relations and book publishing and lived all around Australia, and in Ireland and England. She is the author of five previous novels, including, most recently, The Alphabet Sisters and Family Baggage, which were international bestsellers and have been published in translation in Europe. She now lives in Dublin with her husband.
Fans of McInerney's last book, A Taste for It, won't be disappointed by her second book - the two share many similarities, not least the themes of Ireland and Australia, food and travel. On a trip to Australia to visit her childhood best friend, Eva becomes entrapped in a prank that has gone too far - a somewhat predictable plotline of a character pretending to be someone else. But despite her deceit, Eva is such a likeable character that we easily forgive her flaws. Like all good romance novels, she meets the quintessential `man of her dreams', Joseph, who, funnily enough, is also not who he seems. Besides the main impetus of the ensuing romance, the plot ventures into other terrain, such as Joseph's broken family and Eva's coming to terms with failure. McInerney provides enough twists and turns to keep the reader engaged and overcome the initial impression of predictability. A delightful and romantic tale, with splashes of humour (Melbourne's Lygon Street is described as a `mating pen'), this is definitely worth recommending for summer and beachside reading, or to those looking for a `feel-good' light read. It's great to see such strong Australian commercial fiction coming through; something we'll see more of in the next few months. Joanne Shiells is the assistant editor of AB&P. C. 2002 Thorpe-Bowker and contributors