About the Book:
Four years ago, nineteen-year-old Travis Brown made a choice: to raise his newborn daughter on his own. While most of his friends were out partying and meeting girls, Travis was at home, changing diapers and worrying about keeping food on the table. But he's never regretted his decision. Bella is the light of his life. The reason behind every move he makes. And so far, she is fed. Cared for. Safe.
But when Travis loses his construction job and his home, the security he's worked so hard to create for Bella begins to crumble….
Then a miracle. A job in Raleigh has the power to turn their fortunes around. It has to. But when Travis arrives in Raleigh, there is no job, only an offer to participate in a onetime criminal act that promises quick money and no repercussions.
With nowhere else to turn, Travis must make another choice for his daughter's sake.
Even if it means he might lose her.
What would you do, as a parent, to support your child? What if you had a busy life, a life that wasn't what you had dreamed of, but a life where you were getting by, and then several somethings happened and you were unemployed and homeless? What if someone offered you the chance to make some quick money doing something you knew was illegal? Would you leave your child with a virtual stranger so that you could take this job? Would you do so by telling her you'd be back in a minute, and then driving off? If you were the stranger, would you keep the child for two days, without knowing her last name, or much more about her? If your answers to all those questions are "no", then I'd say you are normal. However, if you can get over the highly improbable premise on which the story is built, Diane Chamberlain gives us some characters who are easy to love, and others who are easy to hate.
The Good Father is about Travis, an unwed young father who took custody of the baby when the mother wanted to give her up for adoption. The mother needed a heart transplant and was in no position to raise the baby. Of course her father hated him and tried to keep them apart. She was told he was married; he was told never to contact her again. The mother, Robin, sees history repeating itself in the family of her fiancee and for the first time, she longs for the baby she surrendered. The other main character is Erin, a woman who recently lost her own daughter, and who, as often happens in such cases, is now estranged from her husband. She meets Travis, and his daughter Bella in a coffee shop where she whiles away time focusing on her grief.
Chapters are titled by the name of the character from whose point of view they are told. This allows several separate stories to be told, stories that converge at the end.
Though the whole set-up was highly improbable, I enjoyed the story, so I'll give it a B. I'd like to thank the publisher for making a review copy available via NetGalley. You can learn more about Diane Chamberlain at her website.
Other Chamberlain books I reviewed:
The Lies We Told
The Midwife's Confession