Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A Mom For Callie-Laura Bradford

A Mom For Callie
Laura Bradford
Harlequin American, Aug 2010, $4.99
ISBN: 9780373753192

Widow author Betsy Anderson has not moved on since her husband Mark died eighteen months ago. Literally moved by a picture of Paxton Bridge in a bookstore calendar, she leaves Manhattan to see the real thing twelve hundred miles away. She knows her spontaneous act is certifiable as there are nicer views from New York City’s pedestrian bridges than this one in Cedar Creek, Illinois, but she felt compelled to go see this stone bridge, as if this simple inane act symbolized moving on.

At the bridge, Betsy meets Police Officer Kyle Brennan, a single father uninterested in any romantic relationships since his Callie’s mother Lila deserted her. At a bookstore in town, Betsy meets fan Angela Murphy whose husband Tom is Kyle’s partner. They discuss true love, which leads to Betsy staying in town to write her next book. As the author and the cop begin to see one another, her guilt over defiling her late spouse’s memory and his remorse over doing the wrong thing for his child Callie by dating threatens to end their relationship.

This is a wonderful contemporary romance starring a grieving widow who knows she loved Mark, but was not in true love with him and the cop who makes her tingle and sweat. The keys to the story line are Callie is not precocious or rabid and Laura Bradford’s ability to tell a Heartland romance without denigrating big cities or turning small towns into Eden. At times false impressions seem overly done, although one could argue the lead couple’s emotional baggage is the cause. Still the overarching theme that home is where the heart feels the contentment of being loved and loving back makes for a delightfully contented read..

Harriet Klausner


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