Labels: eBook, KTempleton, Pub08
What a refreshing read. Short, sweet and very strong. Picked up this recommendation from The Good, The Bad and The Unread. They were having a Harlequin spotlight and Karen Templeton was featured (You can find the Spotlight Here). The premise and reviews were very good so I picked it up in eBook. It was wonderful! I will definitely be keeping Ms. Templeton in my radar for her future work.
Kevin Vaccaro is a recovering addict who after wandering through life in a misguided effort of rebellion decides to get his act together. Unfortunately at the time his girlfriend was an addict herself and, although he tried to help her, he realizes that he needs to help himself first. He walks away from the relationship ignorant of the fact that she was pregnant. A year later he is ready to make amends. He is not looking to go back the relationship but to salvage the friendship he once had with Robyn. When he arrives at the home of Victor Booth he finds a hostile welcome from Robyn's father and sister. He later discovers that their hostility is justified having discovered that his ex-girlfriend is dead and he is a father.
Julianne Booth seems to find herself always recovering. First she has to recover from her mother's suicide, taking on the role of caregiver to her parent and younger sister, then when she finally thinks she will live her own happily ever after, a drunk driver takes the life of her husband and subsequently her own unborn child. Since the accident her life has been left in limbo until she is called to care for her pregnant sister and then for her newborn niece. She has built a barrier around herself, limiting her life to her niece's existence. When Kevin shows up her world threatens to crumble once again.
This is a book about growth. It's about three people learning to overcome the fear of living. Kevin, who is the recovering addict is actually the less damaged among them all.
Victor (Robyn and Julianne's father) writes self help book but cannot seem to help those closes to him. The only ways he feels he can protect them is by isolating them from the big bad world, but by doing so he is shutting himself out from the world too. He has given up on a second chance for love himself in an effort to stay close and protect the only daughter left to him.
Julianne's compliance to her father's safe harbor is destroying her. She knows that the right thing to do is to give up Pippa (the baby) to Kevin but she is lost without her and cannot find the strength to recover from that blow. When she starts falling for Kevin, her fears magnify because she cannot love again.
Templeton is a master and her trade. She took what could have been a cliche of a plot line (grieving widows, surprise pregnancies, love between in laws) and made it a poignant tale of individual growth and strength. Each character find within themselves the strength to heal so they could be open tot he love they were being offered. Wonderful!