On the morning of Nell and James’ wedding a little girl holidaying on the island with her family goes missing, and a comb of the island ensues, turning into a nationwide search when no trace of her is found. Meanwhile, Imelda and Hugh are asked to provide respite fostering for a few weeks for troubled teen Eve, and find her behaviour challenging. Imelda’s sister Marian and husband Vernon come to visit (both having rented Nell’s house with Imelda) and book into Laura’s B&B for a week. During this time, Gavin is struck with acute appendicitis and is rushed to the mainland, and a day afterwards, when Laura goes into labour, Eve, who has begun helping out at the B&B, and Marian become clueless midwives as they await the arrival of the island doctor. Afterwards, Eve reveals to Marian that she’s been sexually abused for years by the son of her fulltime foster parents. Hugh and Imelda immediately report this, and eventually obtain Eve on a permanent basis.
Nell’s father Denis, out walking alone, encounters a little girl in the garden of a house who turns out to be the missing child, snatched impulsively by a pair of reclusive siblings on a day trip to Roone.
In the final scene, Laura proposes to Gavin at the twins’ christening and he says yes, while something seems to be starting up beween James’ son Andy and a happier Eve…
UK Publisher: Hachette