I don't usually start a review out by addressing the author, but I'm making an exception here. Darn you, Holly Jacobs. I cried throughout the last quarter of Carry Her Heart. Cats climbed into my lap because I was crying. It's all your fault.
Author Piper George lives across the street from an elementary school in Erie, Pennsylvania. Those children are the inspiration for her books, the books she writes for pre-teens and her young adult novels. She reads to the children in kindergarten and first grade, and, eventually helps the older students with writing. And, every child reminds her of the daughter she gave up for adoption when she was a young teen mother. It's the daughter she can't forget, the one she dedicates every book to, and all of her charitable activities.
When Ned Chesterfield moves in next door, she recognizes him immediately as the next character in a book. She doesn't recognize him as a friend who could come to mean more to her. But, Piper has never given away her heart since the day she gave away her daughter.
Holly Jacobs' latest novel is a love story on so many levels. It's a story of a woman learning about love as she learns about herself. It's the story of a the love necessary to be a mother, and what it takes to love a child and be a mother. It's also a story about children who are hungry and needy. Piper George, through her charities, puts a face on all of those children so donors can understand that their gifts do change lives.
I don't mean to make it sound as if Carry Her Heart is a sad story. It isn't. In fact, it's funny at times. Readers of Jacobs' earlier books will recognize Mrs. Salo at the Everything But a Dog adoption event. It's a perfect scene. And, there are often funny exchanges between Ned and Piper, who are drawn together despite Ned's jealous girlfriend and the man Piper dates.
However, Carry Her Heart is a beautiful story of love and friendship. And, Holly Jacobs' message of love is strong and touching. Darn you, Holly.
Holly Jacobs' website is www.hollyjacobs.com
Carry Her Heart by Holly Jacobs. Montlake Romance. 2015. ISBN 9781477829288 (paperback), 209p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The author sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.