From Publishers Weekly
When Fiona Montgomery dropped out of college, stole her mother's pearls and ran off to play in a rock band, she opened a rift between her parents, toy designer Avery and carpenter Mike. Avery longed to re-establish contact, while Mike refused to forgive the daughter who destroyed his faith in a happy home. Now Fiona's back in her hometown of Larkin, Kans., regretful but still fiercely independent and with a baby daughter in tow. After Avery spots her daughter working at a grocery store, old wounds reopen and relationships shift, setting off a chain reaction that threatens to destroy the shaky remains of Avery and Mike's marriage. Meanwhile, the risky expansion of Avery's stuffed-animal business nearly backfires, and Mike must summon the strength to stop enabling his alcoholic younger brother. Witmer, previously known for historical romances (writing as Elizabeth Kary and Elizabeth Grayson), handles familiar emotional territory with skill, using the tumultuous mother-daughter bond to propel the drama. Though characters may move a bit slowly for some readers, and the holiday finale comes as no surprise, this novel will still keep fans of women's fiction smiling and reaching for the tissues. (Nov.)
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Avery Montgomery never expected that when her daughter, Fiona, finally returned home, Avery would find her working at the Food-4-Less. Eighteen months ago, Fiona had run away to tour with her boyfriend's rock band, but now all that matters to Avery is that Fiona is back. Then Avery discovers that her husband, Mike, had known Fiona was back in Larkin all along but had somehow decided not to tell Avery. Mike refuses to forgive Fiona for running away, and he doesn't want Avery talking to Fiona. Forced to choose between her husband and her daughter, Avery does the only thing she can think of: search for a way to put her family back together again. With her usual gift for subtly nuanced characters and richly emotional writing, Witmer has created a quietly powerful story about marriage and family, love and friendship, and life's sorrows and joys that is splendidly satisfying. John Charles
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