Sweet Laurel Falls - Raeanne Thayne
Released October 2011
Book Review by Tracy Farnsworth
Sweet Laurel Falls is the third book in the Hope's Crossing series. In this sweet romance, Maura McKnight-Parker is reeling from her younger daughter's tragic death. While she'd like to curl up, she does have an older daughter, Sage, who needs her. When Sage shows up with a man from Maura's past and announces she's found her dad, Maura's life is turned upside down. Sage is angry that Maura never told her, and Maura's caught up in a past she'd rather forget.
Jackson Lange walked out when Maura was a teenager and broke her heart. Maura never had the chance to tell him she was pregnant. Almost 20 years later, she's not sure where to go from her, but she can't deny Sage the chance to get to know her father. Being together, however, is bringing up feelings that Maura thought had died long ago.
Jack left 20 years ago to escape his father's control of both his family and the town. His father seems to want to make amends, but one thing Jack knows is that you cannot trust the ruthless businessman. There's a lot of healing going on, and whether relationships can be repaired is yet to be seen.
Obviously, there is a lot going on in Sweet Laurel Falls, with multiple relationships in need of repair. Watching each character grow and take a closer look at their life and the mistakes they made. I had a great time getting to know them, especially Jack's father.
I didn't read the first two books and wish now that I had, but this latest Hope's Crossing novel does stand alone. Brief recaps into other character's lives do appear, and for the newcomer, they really didn't make much impact because I didn't know their backstory. The rest of the story embraced me and had me staying up late to see how things played out.
Here's to hoping that Sage gets her own story in the future, and I wouldn't mind seeing Jack's dad get a new lease on life either!