Foreword Review — Nov / Dec 2007
Samantha “Sam” Owens left Nantucket to escape her past, thinking that she would never see her best friend Landon Reed again. When she returns to sell the cottage she inherited from her stepfather, however, she finds Landon still living there, two doors down, and she knows that sooner or later the secrets she has kept from him must come out.
Landon first realized in high school that he was in love with Sam, his oldest and closest friend. Unfortunately for him, her troubled childhood left her unable to completely trust anyone. Her father died when Sam was eight, and her mother married the abusive Emmett, abandoning them both five years later. The final straw came when Landon left her as well, to go to college, and she ended up sleeping with his brother, getting pregnant, and fleeing the island.
Denise Hunter is the author of eight other novels, some of which have won awards from the Colorado Romance Writers of America and First Coast Romance Writers. Her novels have their basis in Christian teachings, but will appeal to all women readers with a taste for a good love story.
As Landon helps Sam prepare the neglected cottage for sale, he makes it clear that he will not give up on her so easily. But he is unaware of the secrets she has been keeping about her relationship with her stepfather, her daughter’s identity, and the mystery surrounding Landon’s brother’s death. Worse, when she is alone with him, Sam is reminded too much of her painful childhood to let him get close.
Hunter’s characters are well drawn and familiar, from the moody preteen daughter, to Landon’s protective friend Scott, and the philandering bartender Tully. Readers will feel at home on the small-town island of Nantucket and will be able to vividly picture the seaside cottage whose condition improves at a slightly quicker pace than Sam’s heart. Long before Sam realizes that Landon is the only one in her life who keeps his word, readers will hear the beat of hoofs galloping to a rescue.