Book Recommendation – Regaining Mercy by Carolyn Miller

Book Description:

A mom ready to do anything for her son. A man determined to win the woman he loves.

Going on Love at First Glance had seemed like such a good idea. She didn’t care about finding Mr. Right. No, Mindy Murray chose the reality TV show for more mercenary reasons.  A mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do when it comes to feeding her son.

When Mindy returns to Elnora, the girl from the “wrong side of the island” just wants a chance to rebuild her reputation. Too bad the folks at church don’t practice what the preacher preaches.

Enter Dermott Reilly. The interim boss at Greener Gardens has always had a soft spot for Mindy and her son, but with his new responsibilities, an important garden competition, and a few other concerns, he finds it difficult to prove himself to her.

A tropical storm and a missing child prove that sometimes grace appears in the most unusual ways.

Regaining Mercy concludes the Elnora Island romances of the Independence Islands Series, featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily ever-afters.

The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Narelle’s Thoughts:

I enjoyed reading Regaining Mercy and visiting the pretty and relaxing Independence Islands beach setting. Mindy is a single mom with low self esteem who can’t catch a break. Her most recent big mistake was her decision to participate in a reality tv dating show. Mindy believes she’ll never be respected or accepted in her home town.

The story opens at the grocery store where Mindy is working as a cashier. A snobbish church lady verbally harasses Mindy in the store and, when Mindy finally takes the bait and speaks up, the customer twists the situation to try and get Mindy fired.

Dermott is friends with Mindy and has worked at Greener Gardens with her brother. Dermott witnesses the grocery store incident, backs up Mindy’s version of events, and inadvertently makes Mindy’s work situation worse. He feels bad about what happened and talks with Callie, his boss, about creating a new job for Mindy at Greener Gardens doing their social media.

Life isn’t fair, and the customer abuse and harassment Mindy was subjected to in her workplace was unacceptable on so many levels. I also empathised with Mindy because she’s struggling to raise her son on her own without family support. Jon is an adorable little boy who’s having difficulties navigating social situations. Mindy is in denial that there might be a medical reason to explain Jon’s behaviour eg. autism spectrum disorder, and she doesn’t have the financial resources to seek medical help for Jon.

A lovely friends-to-more romance develops between Mindy and Dermott with many bumps along their path to happily-ever-after. They work together photographing garden projects, but Mindy doesn’t trust people easily, and Dermott questions whether Mindy shares his faith. I recommend Regaining Mercy to contemporary romance readers who like single mom romance stories that sensitively deal with family issues.

Many thanks to Celebrate Lit Publishing for the advanced reader ebook copy.

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