The Rouseabout, by Rachael Treasure (Penguin, RRP $37):
Us Kiwis have always been suckers for Aussie farming stories, in book and on TV, so it’s no surprise that Rachael Treasure’s book are proving popular.
In this story, loveable larrikan Kate Webster is the star. Kate tends to live for today and worry about tomorrow when it happens. Unfortunately, she has a habit of messing up the chances that life throws her way.
Still reeling from the death of her mother, she takes on a dare at a bachelors’ and spinsters’ ball — a traditional Aussie rural social event — to get her paws on the somewhat gorgeous farm boy Nick McDonnell.
All goes according to plan until Kate, who is preparing to start a new life away from her grieving father and the pressures of the family farm, discovers her adventure with Nick has left her with more than just a few good memories. She’s pregnant.
Several years later, with a toddler in tow, Kate must return home to face the music — her family and her child’s father.
Okay, so in places this is a bit McLeod’s Daughters-ish but it’s an easy read and not too soppy.