Daddy's Home by Deb Kastner
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What do you get when you cross a lady doctor with her dying sister, sister's newborn infant and estranged husband (to whom the doctor had been engaged) and subject the result to the merciless scrutiny of Smalltown, USA? You get the inspirational romance Daddy's Home, an exercise in the adage that appearances certainly can deceive.
Dr. Jasmine Enderlin once loved Christopher Jordan wholeheartedly. But he betrayed her by marrying her sister, then abandoning his pregnant bride. Nevertheless, Jasmine forgives her sister's role in the betrayal, and when her sister dies, Jasmine embraces the opportunity to act as her nephew's guardian.
However, Christopher's actions, past as well as present, force Jasmine to question her faith and emotions when the prodigal daddy returns to claim his three-month-old son. Christopher wants to explain his actions, but Jasmine's grief-fueled anger erects a wall that only love can destroy. As discoveries about Christopher's and his late wife's pasts chip away at Jasmine's emotional prison, she learns that the truth can, indeed, set one free.
As with most romances, the characters and their relationships prove the long suit of Daddy's Home. Jasmine, the virginal but tough heroine, struggles to balance the escalating demands of career and motherhood against her crises of grief, faith, and the startling revelation that her love for Christopher never died. Christopher plays the gallant but misunderstood hero who does the wrong things for the right reasons. And, like most romances, this novel is all but devoid of plot. Yet Daddy's Home doesn't require a world-saving plot to be engaging, thought provoking and entertaining.
Sometimes the world needs a gentle reminder that it can indeed be saved one infant -- and one family -- at a time.
(Originally published in Crescent Blues. Reprinted with permission.)
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