When you follow your heart, never count the cost.
Trusting in the One who orders her steps, Nettie Bledsoe is determined not to deviate from her route to the charity kitchen. Don’t stop for anything, her sisters say. Pittsburgh isn’t like Georgia, they warn. Yet when low moans of unholy suffering drift from an alley, she can’t help but investigate. It’s a man. The most beautiful man she’s ever seen. Despite his scandalous reputation, something within her responds to his sinfully rich voice.
Jay Evans is trying hard to stay on the straight and narrow, and doesn’t want help from any church do-gooder. But until his wound heals, he needs help caring for his young daughter, Goldie. Especially since Nettie saw fit to fire Goldie’s barely competent nanny.
Despite their mismatched backgrounds, Nettie and Jay fight a losing battle against their growing attraction. But it’s only when Nettie is kidnapped that Jay realizes that if he doesn’t get her back safe and sound, his heart will shatter into uncountable pieces.
Warning: Contains a single father with a photographic memory for numbers, and a country girl out of her element in the city. It all adds up to a heart-winning tale.
Source: ARC from Samhain Publishing via NetGalley
While I really enjoyed the first two books from this series, this one wasn’t for me. Whereas the first two books dealt with prejudice and narrow-minded viewpoints, this book quieter in its outlook and deals more with a crisis of faith. God and religion has been a strong theme in this series so far, but this was the first time it dominated the entire plot, almost to the exclusion of anything else. Which is not really my thing.
Nettie was very naive at the start, and also exceedingly stubborn. I found her kind of annoying, the way she wanders about ignoring warnings and not thinking too highly of the people around her, yet absolutely positive that Jay is a good man – despite his actions (when she first meets him) being the complete opposite. She’s an okay character, but after the strong leads of Ruby and Mags in the previous books, she’s was just a bit light-weight.
Speaking of Ruby – what’s happened to her? She’s awful in this book, so judgemental and cold. You’d think after all she’d been through, and the way she never let her gender hold her back, she’d have been more supportive of Nettie. But no, instead she’s so snobby and narrow-minded. I thought she’d have a good effect on Adam and his priggish tendencies, but it seems like she’s turned into him and he’s grown worse! I never expected Mags’ mother-in-law to be the voice of reason.
So I found that side of things sadly disappointing. A bit like the romance, which never caught light for me. Jay is an okay character too, but his feelings are all over the place. One minute he’s attracted to Nettie, the next he thinks she killed his wife, then she’s too good for him, then he doesn’t know what he wants. And when I think he’s made up his mind, suddenly he hasn’t, or he might have, or… who knows? There was never really a decent connection between the pair of them, since Nettie’s too busy trying to get him back to church to notice him as a man, and he’s got other things on his mind. I wanted to see something between them, but it felt kind of forced.
Thank goodness for Goldie. What a precocious little miss she is. I loved her, bossing her way around the place, trying to take her father in hand, wanting to sort out Nettie’s clothes. She’s great fun and was the one thing in this book that I really liked.
The plot itself is pretty much laid out in its entirety in the blurb (minus the religion), so you won’t find any surprises here. It’s well written, like the rest of the series, and the historical details are wonderful. However, if you’re not a fan of Christian Fiction, then you probably won’t enjoy this one. Overall, it was just okay for me, but I’ll still keep an eye out for the rest of the series and hope that there’s a little more substance to the next sister’s tale.
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