When Ruth's father tells her to take a young toddler and leave, traveling as Ruth Malloy, a young widow/mother, she puts her faith in him and in God that she is doing the right thing. A short time later, her father is arrested and put on trial for murder, and while Ruth wants to help her dad, she must safeguard the child she is watching over, while entrusting her well-being to strangers.
As the story unfolds, I found myself really loving the small town Ruth ended up in, as well as the individuals she ultimately becomes friends with.
Complications arise as reporters try to find Ruth and uncover what they believe will be evidence against her father. Enter Jake: a young man who is trying to redeem himself in the eyes of his brother and his readers. He must find Ruth and report back on what she is hiding. While doing his research, he finds himself noticing so much more about Ruth, and he begins to have feelings for her. In the end, he must decide what to do about the article he is writing about Ruth, and he must deal with his feelings for her while earning her trust.
The book had a few twists that really helped to solidify the overall story. One character I would LOVE to read more about in future books is Captain Grant. He was a character who popped up throughout the book, so we got to see tantalizing glimpses of his real character, but I'd love to see more.
I really enjoyed the book, and as I stated earlier, I hope this is just the start to a series - there were too many wonderful characters who could be explored in books of their own.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Delia Parr, pen name for Mary Lechleidner, is the author of 10 historical novels and the winner of several awards, including the Laurel Wreath Award for Historical Romance and the Aspen Gold Award for Best Inspirational Book. She is a full-time high school teacher who spends her summer vacations writing and kayaking. The mother of three grown children, she lives in Collingswood, New Jersey.
ABOUT THE BOOK
But with the emergence of the penny press, the imagination of the reading public is stirred, and her father's trial stands center stage. Asher Tripp is the brash newspaperman who determines that this case is the event he can use to redeem himself as a journalist.
Ruth finds solace tending a garden along the banks of the Toms River--a place where she can find a measure of peace in the midst of the sorrow that continues to build. It is also here that Asher Tripp finds a temporary residence, all in an attempt to discover if the lovely creature known as Widow Malloy is truly Ruth Livingstone, the woman every newspaper has been looking for.
Love begins to slowly bloom...but is the affection they share strong enough to withstand the secrets that separate them?
If you would like to read the first chapter of Love's First Bloom, go HERE.
Edition Reviewed: Paperback - Review copy received courtesy of the publisher, many thanks to both the author and the publisher for sending me a copy to review!