A very sweet love story! This author’s books are warm in sensuality, not hot, but so very lovable. This one has a great story of second chance with funny scenes, so entertaining. I had a great time reading this book and ended up in a great mood. I’ve read other books by this author and they are always the feel-good type of story.
Matt is a soccer coach for little kids. He has a five-year-old nephew who lives with him while his sister pursues her studies in medicine. He’s on the soccer team and they were on the first practice of the year. This first practice was funny in two parts: first, all the single moms wanting a piece of Matt. Second, when he’s explaining soccer to the kids and demonstrating moves, the practice deteriorated to a melee where one mother was hit on the nose, the coach hit on the head and all the kids rioting for balls. It was a great hilarious first scene, and very effective because right after that arrived Noah’s best friend Toby with his mother, who turned out to be Matt’s ex-girlfriend, the woman who broke his heart twelve years ago.
Anna was back in town because her elderly widowed father broke his leg and needed help. So Anne took a leave of absence from her work in International Finance in London, took her son out of school and flew to Blue Springs for a few months to assist her father get back on his feet. The last thing she expected was to take Toby to soccer practice and face Matt, the only man she had ever loved and had to leave, right after college, for her job in London.
Initially, the reasons for the breakup are not known but as the book progressed I sort of guessed. And I also figured that Matt would be clueless and resentful. There are several relations that are in progress in the book and I loved to read how all of them dealt with their issues. Anna’s father was such a grumpy old man, very bad-tempered and mean mouthed. Her little boy was terrified of his grandfather. Anna had to reason with her father so he would relent and be more agreeable. And then we see the development of the relation of Toby with his grandpa. And we also see a father who is trying… Anna has to deal with his father’s future since it soon became evident that he wasn’t progressing and would need to get into assisted living.
Matt initially was furious with her but then started understanding and dealing. Anna was realizing that her love and her heart and her life belonged in Blue Springs and with Matt but there were legal issues that tied her to stay in London.
The boys Toby and Ethan playing together and being best friends was precious to read. All the innocence and feelings of little boys who need love and attention. Poor Toby was getting very attached to Matt because for the first time in his life he was getting the attention of a father figure. Regardless of his feelings about Anna, Matt was big enough that he gave Toby the attention and care he deserved and won, because he was a delight of a little boy.
And finally Matt and Anna. Anna was a clear cut character, she loved Matt but she needed to get away. Then life got in the way. Matt needed to understand a lot of things and his mother played a pivotal role. He also had a huge decision regarding Ethan’s custody, since his sister was going to be away for ten years until she got her degree. I loved Matt’s character, it was full of integrity, tenderness, good humor, and protectiveness. No alpha man here, but a man of substance and strong presence. His generosity of spirit in accepting Ethan into his home and adapting his life to include his nephew was exemplary.
There was lots of growing and sorting out feelings and that’s why this was such a great book. It’s not just a love story, but a family story. It was entertaining all the way.