July 23, 2014

A Man to Hold on To. Marilyn Pappano

A Man to Hold on To book cover
A Man to Hold on To
Marilyn Pappano
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Date: 2014
Format: Audiobook
Length: 11hrs 10 min
Narrator: Loretta Rawlins
Genre: Contemporary
Source: Own audiobook

Therese Matheson doesn't know if she'll ever get over losing her husband in Afghanistan. Surviving Paul's death has been hard, but raising his sullen son and his thirteen-going-on-thirty daughter alone has been even harder. All they need is a fresh start, and Tallgrass, Oklahoma, could be the perfect new beginning . . . especially when Therese meets Sergeant Keegan Logan. The sexy combat medic and single dad soon awakens a desire she'd thought long buried.

Keegan always wanted to be a father . . . someday. So when his ex-girlfriend disappears, leaving her daughter in his care, Keegan's hands are tied. He has to find the girl's father. His search leads him to Tallgrass and to a beautiful brunette widow who has no idea her husband was ever unfaithful. What begins as a friendship soon ignites into something far more and gives him the courage to be the kind of man-and father-he always dreamt he could be. But his secret still stands between them. Can Keegan reveal the truth and convince Therese they share something too special to lose-a love that can bring two families together?
My thoughts
A Man to Hold on To is the second book in the Tallgrass series by Marilyn Pappano.  I liked the first one so decided to listen to the audio of the second one.  We were introduced to Therese and her stepchildren in the first novel.  Therese belongs to a group of women who meet regularly - they have one main thing in common - they all lost their husbands in war.

Therese has battled to connect and love her stepchildren, but they have been resistant and at times downright rude.  We meet them as again as they return from a visit from their mother.  What? You might ask - why aren't they with their mother full time?  Good question - however Therese does have custody, and I know if I was either one of the children, I know who I would rather be with.

Into this situation walks Keegan with a youngster - almost three.  Mariah and she calls him Sally's boy - she has been taken care of recently by her grandmother - Keegan's mother.  This has been going on since the mother dumped Mariah on them.  One of the delights of this book is when Keegan is enforced to spend a couple of weeks in Mariah's company.  He finds his heart opening up to her.

Mariah also scores a hit with Abby and Jacob - the horror children.  Or are they such horrible kids? I suspect their behaviour would be quite typical of children who have lost a father, find their own mother doesn't really care for them, and they are stuck with a stepmother.  I read a review of this book where the reader was sorry that Therese didn't score over Abby in the book.  Yet as Therese kept reminding herself - she was the adult!  And a very good one too.

The book also keeps us in mind of Jessie, another war widow, who has a problem with drinking and can end up drunk in anyones bed - and she isn't doing too well at work either.  She had such a one night stand with Dalton in the last book, and it looks like now this could be going somewhere.

The narrator, Loretta Rawlins did a competent job of narrating, and I will be quite happy to listen to the next one in this series as an audiobook if she is narrating.  I enjoyed the story, and the characters.  I hope  we hear a little more of Therese and her family in the next book.
4 stars


  1. Great review Kathryn. This sounds like it has plenty of complications to keep it interesting.

    1. Yes it was Pat - I did enjoy it and the audio added rather than detracted for this book.

  2. I'm intrigued by the complicated relationships! Sounds like one I'd enjoy.


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