Sunday, April 05, 2015

Review: Together With You

About the Book:
When a Lost Child warning blares over the mall's PA system, Carly Mason finds the little girl playing with a stuffed rabbit. Something about Penny Tremaine is different. An ex-social worker, Carly recognizes that the child suffers fetal alcohol effects, and a piece of Carly's past suddenly confronts her. Never again will she become personally involved with a client. The risks are far too great. But something about Penny--and Penny's handsome father--tugs at Carly's heart.

Dr. Ryan Tremaine is trying to put his life back together. With his ex-wife remarried and on a trip far away, his two teenage sons and Penny are living under his roof full time. Ryan has put his faith in his Sink-or-Swim list, a plan to reconnect with his children. The first step: recruit Carly Mason to be Penny's nanny.

Ryan never anticipated being so drawn to Carly, an attraction Carly seems to fight as much as he does. Could Carly be the missing piece that helps his family stay afloat, or will their blossoming romance only complicate things further?

Known for her realistic and engaging characters, Victoria Bylin delivers an emotion-packed story reminiscent of The Sound of Music, one that reminds us all to believe in the power of faith and love.

My Comments:
This is old-fashioned Christian romance where one of the characters has to find Jesus before they can live happily ever after.  If a lot of overt religious content is a turn-off, this is not the book for you.  Nevertheless, it is a heartwarming romance with a lot of good information about fetal alcohol syndrome and the effects it can have on a child.  

Ryan failed his wife and failed his family.  Now he is divorced, and his ex-wife, with whom his boys usually live, is on a mission trip.  He has the boys for the summer and has to be the single parent.  Complicating this is the fact that the woman with whom he had an affair and fathered a child recently died, and so now he is raising his daughter, who has fetal alcohol syndrome.  He has been through three nannies so far and is looking for another. Ryan does not believe in God.

Claire trained as a social worker and worked with teens affected with fetal alcohol syndrome. Something happened with a teen with whom she worked that convinced her to leave working directly with clients.  However, Ryan convinces her to become his daughter's nanny.  It doesn't take long for the sparks between them to fly, but Claire is a Christian and she is concerned about getting involved with a man who doesn't share her faith.   

As I said in the first paragraph, Ryan has to find Jesus before they can live happily ever after.  Claire also has a spiritual lesson to learn and we listen to her minister-father teach it to her.  Other religous lessons are dropped here and there, primarily dealing with sexual purity.  I suspect this is a book that will be preaching to the choir as others will reject it on religious grounds.  Grade:  B-

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