Author: Charles Martin
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: May 8, 2018
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewer: Jessica Higgins
A great new story by one of my favorite authors!
Allie has had a rough life. What started as a promising childhood with loving parents owning a popular local restaurant was dashed when her father become addicted to gambling. Once her father went into debt, he started drinking, which led to physically abusing her mother. Her childhood sweetheart was lost to Vietnam. Her first husband was lost to drugs and trying to put him through rehab cost her the restaurant. Now her second husband has just been tragically killed in a crash with his semi not far from home. Even though their marriage was far from perfect, being left alone again might be all that Allie can take of life.
Joseph’s life isn’t perfect either. His father left him, his brother and mother when they were young. So they threw themselves into other things. Joseph became good at physical activities such as karate. His brother was good with people so he worked as a grocery sacker. Joseph ends up shipped to Vietnam where he serves four tours, but each tour takes its toll. He becomes a trained killer and is tasked to do things that never leave his dreams at night. He can never shake all the bad that he is done in life no matter how much good he does. This is why he has isolated himself in a cabin, but fate has ways of bringing people back together when they least expect it.
As usual, Martin brings an incredible story that life that is entertaining and heart wrenching all at the same time. Allie and Jo-Jo were meant to be together, but circumstances in life kept them apart. And they were not perfect by any means. That is one of the things I love most about the characters that Martin develops. Each character is extremely flawed and from the outside you would probably want to avoid them if you ever met them. But as you get to know them, their edges soften and you begin to understand them. In fact, you actually want to be friends with them. The unlikely cast of characters includes a drug addict, alcoholics, physical abuse, Vietnam war vet, and illegal immigrants.
This book is packed full of family issues, romance, PTSD, and even action with a Mexican drug cartel. But through all of the circumstances, wounds heal and they are able to become somewhat of a family. The theme of the story is forgiveness and it takes the entire story for Joseph to finally accept that. He has tried to atone for what the has done in the past through good deeds, but it is never enough.
There is so much that goes on in this book that the only way to understand it is to just read it. I highly recommend this book for readers that just want to enjoy a great story!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. The views and opinions expressed within are my own.