'Tallulah de Longland,' she said slowly, letting all the Ls in my name loll about lazily in her mouth before passing judgement. 'That,' she announced, 'is a serious glamorgeous name.'
From the day Annabelle Andrews sashays into her classroom, Tallulah 'Lulu' de Longland is bewitched: by Annabelle, by her family, and their sprawling, crumbling house tumbling down to the river.
Their unlikely friendship intensifies through a secret language where they share confidences about their unusual mothers, first loves, and growing up in the small coastal town of Juniper Bay. Their lives become as entwined as Annabelle's initials engraved beneath the de Longland kitchen table.
But the euphoria of youth rarely lasts, and the implosion that destroys their friendship leaves lasting scars and a legacy of self-doubt that haunts Lulu into adulthood.
Years later, Lulu is presented with a choice: remain the perpetual good girl who misses out, or finally step out from the shadows and do something extraordinary. And possibly unforgiveable.
It's not how far you fall, but how high you bounce.
Frances Whiting is Queensland's favourite and best-known female columnist. For over a decade, her weekly column in the Sunday Mail has engaged her readers in the highs, lows and unique absurdities of life. She is also Associate Editor of the 'Sunday Mail' and Senior Feature writer for Q Weekend in the Courier-Mail. Married with two children, when she gets the time Frances plays the guitar (badly) and surfs (also badly). She has published two collections of her columns, Oh To Be A Marching Girl, and That's A Home Run, Tiger! Walking on Trampolines is Frances's first novel.
Modern & Contemporary Fiction