cover image The Place Where You Belong

The Place Where You Belong

Nancy Lavo. Iron Stream, $16.99 trade paper (248p) ISBN 978-1-5630-9635-8

Lavo (Miss Menace) kicks off the Lone Star series with a feel-good romance featuring long-lost high school sweethearts who find their way back to one another. Twenty-eight-year-old Hallie Nichols is a successful public relations specialist in Fort Worth, Tex., and has no desire to return to her one-horse hometown of Village Green. After her mother has a stroke, however, Hallie returns to her childhood home only to discover her ex, Trey Gunther, sitting on the porch. Trey’s a modern-day George Bailey who runs the bank and does all he can to help the townspeople, but 10 years earlier, he broke Hallie’s heart when she spotted him kissing her older sister. As Hallie remains in Village Green to coordinate her mother’s medical care, she’s unable to avoid Trey, and their old flame soon reignites. Meanwhile, Trey has been praying for a way to revitalize the economically stagnant town and realizes Hallie might be the answer­­—if he can convince her to stay and spearhead a public relations campaign. A colorful cast of townspeople, including elderly pastor Dale, as well as Trey’s father, round out this nostalgic tale of second chances, complete with a Hallmark movie-esque conclusion. Readers will eagerly await the next installment. (July)