A Man to Hold On To

Marilyn Pappano. Grand Central/Forever, $8 mass market (400p) ISBN 978-1-4555-2006-0
Pappano makes a powerful and welcome return to the small town of Tallgrass, Okla., with her second novel about military widows and widowers (after A Hero to Come Home To). Therese Matheson’s beloved husband, Paul, died overseas, leaving her to raise Abby and Jacob, his unhappy, resentful teen children from a previous marriage. Unbeknownst to them, Paul was also the father of adorable toddler Mariah by another woman, who left Mariah in the care of her ex-boyfriend, Army medic Keegan Logan. Keegan travels from Louisiana to Tallgrass, hoping to leave Mariah with her real father. Instead, he finds Therese struggling to keep her grief-stricken blended family together. As Keegan and Therese fall in love, Mariah enchants her half-siblings, leaving Keegan—who has told them only that he was looking for Paul, but not why—wondering how and whether to reveal the truth and tarnish the Mathesons’ cherished memories of Paul. Pappano excels at depicting deep emotion without resorting to melodrama, including plenty of humor and the seeds of future Tallgrass romances to balance Therese’s sorrows and Keegan’s inner turmoil. Agent: Melissa Jeglinski, Knight Agency. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/02/2013
Release date: 02/25/2014
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 368 pages - 978-1-4555-2007-7
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