Stories Of Second Chances

Have a few hours to spend reading?  Both of the following books are about love, families, redemption and second chances. One is a debut novel, the other by a well-known author.

Souvenir (2008) by Therese Fowler may have been around for 10 years, but it was her first and is still just as relevant and touching as the day it was published.  Tales of boy meets girl and love rarely grow old.

Meg Powell and Carson McKay grew up together.  They attended the same schools, their families had farms next to each other.  Everyone who knew them assumed that one day the two would be married.  That was their plan too.

All appeared to be on track until the evening of Carson’s planned proposal.  Meg met him at their oak tree one evening and told him they were over.  He was dumbfounded by what she tells him.

The proposal she accepted was from Brian Hamilton, who had been her boss at the bank.  And what an offer he made her!  One she could not turn down.  Not because of love, but a sense of obligation.

17 years later the lives of Meg and Carson are not anything as their childhood dreams.  Meg is now an obstetrician which keeps her quite busy.  Brian golfs, is constantly on the phone for business, and travels often.  Their 16-year-old daughter Savannah is beginning to take an interest in boys that leads her into unknown territory.

Carson has become an international rock star.  He is about to marry 22-year-old Val who is an international star in her own right.  She is a world class surfer.  He is back in town to prepare for his upcoming wedding to Val.

Yes, Meg and Carson cross paths while he is town.  And, that is the final bit of the storyline that I am going to share with you.

Fowler’s storytelling has been compared Nicholas Sparks or Jody Picoult.  I can agree with that way of thinking.  So, if you enjoy those two authors, you will more than likely find read Souvenir a pleasant time well spent.

The next author is very well known, at least for his thriller adventures.  One Summer (2011) by David Baldacci is so unlike his usual writing—certainly not the Camel Club, my favorite series of his.  If you are expecting his adventure thrillers, just put this back on the shelf.

But, if you have some time and need a diversion for a few hours, One Summer should fill the bill.  Definitely a departure from what Baldacci fans are used to.  This title leans more towards the Nicholas Sparks genre than that of David Baldacci.

All that said, open the book and meet good guy and Army vet Jack Armstrong, a man bed ridden and dying of some rare disorder.  His goal is to live until Christmas for his family.  Each day is a trial for him as he tries to hand on.

His trials become deeper the night his wife went out in a raging snow storm for much needed medication for him.  She is killed in an automobile accident on the treacherous roads.

Life becomes more difficult for the family.  Jack enters hospice.  Life as the three kids know it is falling apart.  Lizzie’s parents decide to split up the Jack’s kids by sending to different relatives on the opposite of the country.  Jack is left to die alone.

Determined to get Jackie, Cory and Mikki back living with him, Jack summons strength and his spirit to battle for his life as he did in Afghanistan and Iraq.  It is a long struggle but little by little Jack begins to win his battle for life and for his children.

His goal is to get better and take the children to Lizzie’s childhood home in Channing, South Carolina.  Lizzie had planned to take the children there herself when Jack died.  But it is Jack making the journey.

When they arrive at the ocean front house Lizzie so loved they find it an old beauty but in need of much work.  Also, upon arrival, Jack finds a letter addressed to him from a local attorney.  What was that all about?  Something good.

There you have it.  Two short reviews with little detail.  I do not want to spoil your reading fun.  If these two are unavailable, hundreds and hundreds of others are available.  Hope you are enjoying your summer.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email