Celestine Hitiura Vaite.

This heart warming and beautifully written novel is a must for those who have ever experienced the unique mother-daughter relationship. And for all the guys out there, here's a chance to see what you are missing out on.

Materena is a proud Tahitian woman with a baby and a troublesome husband. It's during one of their spats that Materena finds out that she is pregnant with a baby girl and instantly knows how special she is going to be.

As Materena works as a cleaning lady she nurtures her baby both in her body and throughout her life. Although she struggles with her beautiful Leilani's passion for western life she tries to satisfy her by sending her to a Catholic school and indulging her perhaps a little more than she should.

The study of the two women characters is enchanting and very true to life. Mothers will sympathise with Materena's worrying protectiveness while girls will want Leilani to chase after her dreams.

The lilting language, peppered with many Tahitian sayings, only adds to the feel of the novel and is quick and easy to get used to.

A predictable ending doesn't harm this warm, loving tale that will have readers transporting themselves from a cold and rainy England to the sun-baked island of Tahiti. Frangipani is to be followed by two more books in the Mahi family story.

Gemma Price