Author: Tracey Bateman
Publisher: Waterbrook Press
My synopsis: Nina Parker is an alcoholic. Her husband has divorced her. She does not have custody of her children. Her reputation as a vet has been tarnished. And now, after an episode with her ex lands her in rehab, she finds herself relocating to her hometown of Abbey Hills. She plans on staying with her sister Jill for awhile until she can save up some money for her own place. Meagan, now fifteen, will be accompanying her for spring break.
Abbey Hills contains only painful memories for her. She grew up as the daughter of an alcoholic father and began drinking at a young age. She made it through high school, but after the night of her graduation, she finds herself pregnant with no clear picture as to what happened. She moves away from Abbey Hills determined to make it on her own. She is able to quit drinking during her pregnancy and the first few years of Meagan life - then she meets Hunt, her now ex, and slowly the drinking once again becomes routine. Abbey Hills, even though it is full of past regrets, is now her chance at a new life and a new start with her daughter Meagan.
Jill just happens to be the sheriff of Abbey Hills. On their first night in town, Jill gets a call that there has been a murder, and a pretty gruesome one at that. Some animals have also been found carved up with their hearts missing. Nina becomes a catalyst for the events that transpire, even though she is unaware of it.
My thoughts: I liked the way that the book told Nina's back story, alternating between Nina and her ex, Hunt. It fills in all the gaps while also moving the story forward. Nina is very likable and I can relate to her relationship with her teenage daughter. I sort of felt that she had been dealt a bad hand and I was happy that she was staying sober. Throughout the book, she seems to slowly be regaining faith in herself and faith in her family.
Publisher/Publication Date: Waterbrook Press, October 2009
*This book was provided to me for my unbiased review by Elizabeth at Random House.*