by Janet Hayward Burnham from the August 12, 2013 issue
Tagline: When one determined little girl decides it was time for her aunt to get married...well, things happen!
In a Nutshell: Four-year-old Leah wants cousins. When she finds out the only way she can get some is if her Aunt Shannon gets married, she embarks on a single-minded quest to find her aunt a husband. Turns out she's quite skilled at picking up single men.
Observations: This was a fabulously cute story. The niece was so perfectly written that I could hear her matter-of-fact voice in my head. A pet peeve of mine is when people have kids talking and behaving unlike real kids. It's a tough thing to do well, but I think Burnham succeeded. Here's an example:
He asked [Leah] if she got paid to be a matchmaker. Leah, of course, asked him what a matchmaker was, and Spencer patiently explained.
"I only want to get some cousins," she said. "I don't think I'm a matchmaker."
Leah, like most four-year-olds, is very focused on herself. She's not trying to make her Aunt Shannon happy. She just wants to get herself some cousins.
The only complaint I had about this story was, again, like last week, the ending seemed to go on a tad too long. I see the attempt to bring it full circle and loop us back to the beginning of the story, but in my opinion, it focuses on the niece, not the romance and therefore falls a little flat.
Photo by DonkeyHotey (cc)