Monday, March 02, 2015

Review: This Heart of Mine

About the Book:
As the daughter of a hoarder, Phoenix Fuller had a tough childhood. So when the handsome, popular Riley Stinson became her boyfriend in high school, she finally felt as though she had something to be proud of. Phoenix was desperate not to lose him—especially once she found out she was pregnant. Yes, she might have acted a bit obsessive when he broke up with her. But she did not run down the girl he started dating next. 

Unfortunately, there was no way to prove her innocence. Now, after serving her time in prison, Phoenix has been released. All she wants to do is return to Whiskey Creek and get to know her son. But Jacob's father isn't exactly welcoming. 

Riley doesn't trust Phoenix, doesn't want her in Jacob's life. He is, however, ready to find someone to love. And he wants a good mother for his son. He has no idea that he's about to find both!

My Comments:
This is one of my favorite of the Whiskey Creek books, perhaps because Riley has become a favorite character.  He is solid, reliable, hard-working and a great father.  He's just the kind of guy a girl would like to take home to meet her parents (except for the fact that he is a single parent, and these days, that's not the turn-off it once was either).  Shortly after Riley and Phoenix broke up while in high school, Phoenix was driving a car that hit and killed his new girlfriend.  Riley has been raising their son,who is now in high school, and he has severely limited contact between their son and Phoenix.  Now Phoenix is out of jail, back in town and she wants to know Jacob.  

Phoenix has had to survive  a lot in prison and has learned that the only one she can count on is herself.  She doesn't want to be indebted to anyone and has always sent money home for Jacob.  Now she wants to contribute even more.  While getting to know Jacob, Phoenix also becomes re-acquainted with Jacob's father, who, it turns out,dumped her not because he wanted to but because his parents wanted him to do so.  Sparks fly, wounds are healed and they live happily ever after--you can't fuss at me for spoilers, the book blurb above says the same thing, and besides, its a romance novel; how did you think it would end?

That whole big Whiskey Creek gang is in the book on the sidelines, but they really don't get all that much screen time.  The big secret isn't discussed but we are caught up on a few  people's stories, but they don't make any difference in this story, and those who are not reading the series will just wonder why those passages are there.

I'd like to thank the publisher for making a review copy available via NetGalley.  Grade:  B+

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