The story takes place in Mongolia Falls, Georgia, a small town. The hero is William Jackson Cassidy, a policeman, better know as Jax to his family and community. His mother is dying of cancer. The focus of the book is on the loss and sorrow of the family. The heroine is Gwendolyn Moss, who was attacked and nearly raped a year ago. She is afraid of everything since that happened. These two people find each other and their interaction becomes the story.
The author is able to depict Jax very well. He is the oldest and only son. When Jax was only eleven, his mother, being newly widowed, depended on him to provide for her and his three youngers sisters. Jax's mother is quite fond of Romeo, her spoiled dog, who flunked guard dog training because he adored pretty woman.
Gwen has moved to her aunt's house and has been working as a florist. Since her attack, Gwen is afraid of the dark, men, and being alone. She dresses in brown and retreats from the world.
The most unforgetable experience is when Jax realizes he really needs a long-term relationship, such as his mother had tried to teach him all his life. Jax had believed that everything good would eventually end, so he didn't accept God's influence in his life.
Jax is a handsome ladies' man and is very self-reliant. He accepts his role as protector of his family. Mom's death brings much sadness to the family and the whole town. With it, Jax is left to take care of the estate, including Romeo, which Jax considers a problem!
Jax begins to depend on Gwen for strength and help, causing Gwen to emerge from her shell and reach out to others. Both characters are drawn to rely on each other and God as a foundation of their lives.
The story was good, but redundant in many areas. I feel that the author belabored her tale too much. The main character, Jax, is almost too handsome, pleasant, and everyone's friend, to be believable at first. He is too attached to his mother and overcome with grief. Gwen comes across as overly afraid and mousey at first, but eventually develops into a strong-willed girl. The fact that Gwen influences Jax as to the important things in life is a good conclusion. All in all, it is a love story, showing the influence of God with the two main characters. Christian romance readers will enjoy it. -- Dorothy Wilson, Christian Book Previews.com
After his mother succumbs to cancer, William Jackson “Jax” Cassidy is saddled with the responsibility of settling her estate, watching over his three younger sisters…and contending with Romeo—one very spoiled dog. Though he bears his obligations with grace, the pointlessness of his mother’s death causes Jax to question his faith in God. But God and Romeo move in mysterious ways. Jax is surprised when Romeo takes a shine to his new neighbor, Gwen Moss, and sees the perfect opportunity to rid himself of the exasperating animal. Yet, Romeo is not the only one drawn to Gwen. Jax recognizes a kindred soul in the shy florist—a young woman struggling to get over some soul-deep heartache of her own. Touched by Gwen’s courage, faith and love, Jax embarks on a road to self-discovery that may finally enlighten him to what’s truly important in life. Which is all his mother ever wanted for him...