Known primarily for her historicals, Kimberly Cates takes readers on a heartwarming journey of secrets, emotional upheaval, and the meaning of unconditional love in this new contemporary novel.

Though Hannah O'Connell has physically healed from a hysterectomy, she still feels an emptiness in her life. Her husband, Sam, is attentive, but she misses her daughter, who is away at college. When Hannah discovers an abandoned baby in her laundry basket outside, her heart fills with joy. A note left in the basket asks that she name the child Ellie.

Reluctant at first, Sam agrees to help Hannah obtain temporary custody of the child. But the attorney that Hannah's friend Josie finds to help is Tony Blake. Tony and Hannah have a past, and Hannah's fragile feelings become all too apparent with the reappearance of her high school flame.

As Sam attempts to bridge the distance between him and his wife, the O'Connells try to cement their family back together. But when a shocking event occurs, Hannah is forced to face her past.

Wonderfully crafted characters, carefully and inevitably shaped by the events of their pasts, form the main players in this truly touching novel. Though Ms. Cates' previous novels have received much acclaim, this may be her best effort to date. (Apr., 464 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Sheri Melnick