This last visit to Cavanaugh Island is akin to saying goodbye to your friends at the end of summer, but Alers provides a hint of hope that one day readers will be able to revisit the island and catch up with the characters, who have become friends. Hero Nate is carrying a huge load of baggage, but his evolution to trusting Morgan is realistic and well done.
Morgan Dane is working on the five-year restoration of Angels Landing. She hires Nathaniel Shaw to rebuild the slave village and other buildings on the plantation, since the Shaws have been producing exquisite woodcraft for generations. Morgan once had a girlhood crush on an older Nate, and she soon discovers that her attraction has not faded — and that the feeling is mutual. After years away from Haven Creek, Nate has returned to help his ailing father and reconnect with his younger brother, who has problems with the law. Now he just needs to get past his ex-wife’s betrayal to have a shot at happiness with Morgan. (FOREVER, Jun., 448 pp., $7.99)