Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday Book Review - Driftwood Lane by Denise Hunter

Meridith Ward's unstable childhood with a mentally ill mother causes her adult choices to be safe and well ordered. A shocking phone call informs her that the father that abandoned her has died, and left guardianship of his three children to her.

She travels from St. Louis to Nantucket to find her 3 young siblings living in a B & B in bad need of repair. Her sense of structure and duty sets her on a mission to have the inn repaired for sale and wait for the return of the children's vagabond uncle. She plans to transfer guardianship of the children to him and get back to her safe and ordered life.

Thirteen year old Noelle hates her. Ten year old Max, and seven year old Ben tolerate her a little better. Meridith struggles to help the children deal with their pain and loss as she also works with a contractor on the repairs for Summer Place.

The contractor, handsome and brawny Jake Walker, upends Meridith's inner structure. He makes her feel unsettled, something she has spent her whole life avoiding. Besides, she has a nice, safe fiance waiting back home in St. Louis. Hope and heartache alternate throughout this story as Meridith falls in love with the children and tries to decide what is best for them.

Her struggle forces her to confront her only real enemy. The last minute reveal of a heart shaking deception threatens to dismantle all she's worked for, including the freedom of her heart to love without fear.

I was drawn to the well defined characterizations in this novel. The seaside descriptions put me right there, feeling the sand in my feet and smelling the salt air. The underlying deception that the reader knows and the characters don't kept me turning pages until I came to the satisfying end. Driftwood Lane is the 4th in a series. I enjoyed it very much and recommend it to fans of inspirational romance.
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