Love's First Bloom. Delia Parr. 2010. Bethany House. 32o pages.
Ruth Livingstone had very little time left to change her father's mind.
Widow Ruth Malloy has come to the village of Toms River, New Jersey, with a toddler, Lily, in the spring of 1838. Welcomed by Mr. and Mrs. Garner, she finds a new beginning. But adapting to that new life--new in so many ways--isn't an easy task. New name, new identity, new child, new job. (She's helping Mr. Garner in his apothecary shop.) Ruth needs an escape sometimes. If only there was a place she could go to be alone...
Jake Spencer is also new to Toms River, New Jersey. He's just settling in when he discovers a woman in his garden. The woman, Ruth, is just as surprised at the intrusion. She thought the cabin was abandoned.
Can these two find a way to compromise? To share a space? It won't always be easy. Because both Ruth and Jake are keeping secrets. Not only from one another, but from the whole town.
Ruth is struggling with so much. Her father has been arrested for murder. She seems to be one of the few who believes wholeheartedly in her father's innocence. And instead of being there for him, she's been sent away--having to keep up with the trial and its aftermath through newspapers. Oh, how Ruth HATES, HATES, HATES newspapers and reporters. And when reporters come to town trying to track Ruth Livingstone down, she feels so vulnerable, she doesn't feel safe leaving home.
Jake has struggles of his own. His own past he's trying to redeem. When the time comes, he'll have a BIG decision to make.
Just one kiss.I enjoyed Love's First Bloom. I liked both Ruth and Jake. The story, while predictable in places, was well told. And it wasn't without a few surprises. I liked that!
One soul-wrenching kiss.
That was all it took for him to know there would not be another time or another place for him to fall in love.
The time was right now.
The place was right here.
And as much as he had tried to deny it, he knew in his heart that Ruth was the only woman he would ever love, just as he knew that by loving her, she was the one woman who could cost him the one thing he so desperately wanted to achieve: his redemption. (257)