Title: The Place I Belong, Book 3 Whisper Hose series
Author: Nancy Herkness
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance, Contemporary Fiction
Published By: Montlake Romance (June 3, 2014)
Story Setting: Sanctuary, West Virginia (a small town)
Whisper Horse series:
Take Me Home
The Place I Belong
About the Story: Hannah Linden, a veterinarian has buried herself in a little small town in West Virginia, far from her professional woes and her ex-fiancé in Boston. She considered herself lucky to find someone who would hire her after she told them what happened in her previous job. Something else Hannah hadn’t expected, is her growing love for the town, its people and her patients.
She becomes emotionally touched with Matt, a young teenager who spent a day with her at the clinic learning how important animals are in people’s lives. Hannah finds Matt’s father complex and charming – someone she needs to stay away from to keep her heart intact.
Adam Bosch, Matt’s father and world-renowned chef, when learns of Matt’s existence cannot come to grips with the idea of being a father—he would destroy anyone close to him. Adam has issues he struggles with daily and knows he must keep a distance from people. He’s an alcoholic and has stayed away from the bottle for nine years, but when he drinks he’s afraid that he would be abusive as his father was. Adam convinced himself he can’t be a father nor could he get married. What would he do to his wife or child? Adam fills his life with cooking and has a restaurant in Sanctuary that people fly in by helicopter to dine. That’s his life and he doesn’t need more, but when he meets Hannah, things begin to change.
When Hannah helped Adam with his troubled son he was drawn to her physically and emotionally. She was light to his dark. And he couldn’t stay away.
My Thoughts: This story had three things going for it that I really liked.
The setting is in a small town up in the mountains. There is something a small town has that a larger one doesn’t and these types of stories draw me. It’s as if there is some healing quality to living in a smaller community with the type of people who live there.
Coupling that with a story with animals, it was even more endearing. The little pony that became Matt’s whisper horse tugged at my heartstrings. Trace, Matt’s dog even played a heroic role within the plot. They were as much part of the story as Adam, Hannah and Matt.
Lastly, the story dealt with social issues and diseases we grapple with today and laymen need to further understand how they affect our lives and behavior.
They say that an author should write what they know. Nancy Herkness was born and raised in the mountains of West Virginia and was able to capture the feeling of a small town in words because I saw it very clearly in my mind.
Her story was evenly paced with no slow points that dragged and she kept me reading hours at a time.
The heat between Adam and Hannah was quite sizzling launching them both into territory both were afraid to face. Both had quite noble character.
Her writing lifted words from the page to my imagination. The dialog came natural within a well-crafted whole. Herkness is an excellent writer showing me a life that I’ve never lived until now. The idea of animals sharing our emotional burdens is not new to me however, her story was unique with the idea of whisper horses.
When I read Herkness’s novel it reminded me of author Susan Mallery’s series Fool’s Gold. If you enjoy her books, you’ll surely enjoy Nancy Herkness’s novel–an all-around well-crafted story, romance with a sizzle, in a small town contemporary setting with a heart-warming happy ever after ending.
About the Author: Nancy Herkness was born and raised in the mountains of West Virginia, where she rode a pony much like other children ride bicycles. Herkness discovered her love of reading and soon after a passion for writing romance when her grandmother gifted her a Georgette Heyer novel.
After graduating from Princeton University with honors in English literature and creative writing, she had successful careers in retail, computer programming, and marketing before finally returning to her first love– writing.
She’s the author of the Whisper Horse series as well as several other contemporary romances. Herkness is one of 2003’s Best Up and Coming Authors in the Affaire de Coeur’s readers’ poll. She is also the winner of several writing awards, including the Golden Leaf Award, the Aspen Gold Award, and the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence.