Her Second-Chance Family
Harlequin SuperRomance, Aug 1 2015, $6.75
In Western Pennsylvania, every Saturday for the past month, teenager Willow Jones arrives at the home of Sawyer Williams offering to mow his lawn as a means to balance her karma after the police caught her trying to steal items from his home. Unlike the three previous visits, this time Sawyer accepts Willow’s offer though he distrusts her. Sitting in the driver’s seat observing the interplay, Willow’s foster mom Audrey Smith feels good about the banker giving her ward a chance to make amends.
A “green” architect Audrey understands second, third and nineth chances; a decade ago she and her high school BFFs were in a car accident that left a mom dead and her friendships over. Audrey became a foster mother to the victim’s son Clinton and his buddy Bea. Willow joined their family soon after her arrest, but refuses to divulge her partners in the break-in. As Audrey works her upbeat magic on everyone but herself; she and Sawyer fall in love. However, a successful B&E theft has Sawyer doubting Willow at the cost of his relationship with Audrey.
Once again placing her family drama in the Erie, Pennsylvania area (see the Valley Ridge romances), Holly Jacobs authors an inspiring optimistic contemporary. The three kids (especially Old Soul Willow) steal the show by grounding their Mary Poppins-Pollyanna paragon foster mom. Character-driven, this bubbly drama makes an argument that love and forgiving instead of DNA defines a functional caring family.