While her free-spirited daughter travels the world, Vivienne prepares for a lonely Christmas in Bristol, with her best friend Ellen and her ancient dog Bob.
Then a letter arrives that changes everything. Vivienne's daughter is getting married in New Zealand, and she wants her mum and Ellen by her side.
But out on the rugged coast of Tutukaka, the sea sparkles, romance beckons – and Vivienne falls under the spell of another life. Will she leave everything she holds dear for a chance at happiness? Or will her daughter be the only one to fall in love this Christmas?
Prowse's romantic contemporary novel unfolds slowly and steadily with unexpected twists and smart, funny, honest language. Fifty-three-year-old Vivienne had hoped her wanderlust-stricken daughter, Emma, would return home to Bedminster, England, for Christmas after a four-year absence. Instead, Emma announces she's getting married in New Zealand. Vivienne struggles to be supportive of Emma and keep her own insecurities at bay. Her rambunctious longtime friend Ellen joins her for the trip to Tutukaka, lovingly teasing and challenging her at every opportunity. Free-spirited Emma is her usual ebullient self with her mother, but more reserved with her fianc , Michael; nonetheless, she assures her mother all is well. Vivienne finds her English reserve crumbling under her attraction to Michael's father, Gil, and the stunning beauty of Tutukaka. As Vivienne and Gil explore their budding camaraderie, Vivienne begins to realize how much she needed closure regarding events from her past, but moving on comes at a price. Prowse connects the past to the present, exploring life's journey and the choices the characters made along the way.