Roses & Thorns

Roses & Thorns

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

If Only by Norma Budden


While still in high school, Demi gave birth to a baby girl and, feeling she had no other options, put her up for adoption. Having moved on with her life—gotten married and having had two other children—16 years later, Demi Glenn suddenly cannot get her firstborn daughter out of her mind. After hiring two private detectives but getting no solid information to go on, Demi turns to the one man who will not come back empty-handed, who will not give up until he finds the answers—David Alexander, a married father of two daughters—the father of the baby she had given up so long ago who had no idea he had sired a child as a teen. Together, will they be able to find their daughter without their families being torn apart or will fate intervene, upsetting their lives in a way they'd never dreamed in the pursuit of finding the daughter they can no longer live without?

Review by Rochelle Weber:

Demi Glenn has recurring nightmares that her firstborn child, born while she was a teen and put up for adoption, is in danger. She sees someone sinister chasing her daughter down a beach. She hires two different private detectives, neither of whom can find the child. Desperate, she turns to the one PI she knows will not stop until he finds the girl—David Alexander—her high school sweetheart, and the baby’s father. Both are married with children and neither has told their families about the baby. How could David tell his family? Demi never told him about the baby.

Their child, Renee, has never felt quite comfortable with her parents. They have different interests, and as an only child, she’s lonely. She’s often wondered if she could be adopted, but her mother swears she’s not. Still, that vague discomfort is always there. But, she’s looking forward to the future. Her best friend/boyfriend is leaving for college, and her parents are allowing her to go live with her Aunt in Alberta to be close to him. She can’t wait to start this next adventure in her life.

I never figured out when, where or how Renee was in danger aside from her adoptive parents finding out her birth parents were looking for her and trying to keep her from finding out she was adopted or from meeting them. I spent much of If Only waiting for Renee to be in danger, but it never really happened, and I felt a bit cheated.

There is a mystery here with elements of the paranormal as Demi, David, and Renee all reach out to each other in their dreams. And there’s a bit of a chase scene at the end, but again—I never felt Renee was in danger of anything but being prevented from meeting Demi and David. There is danger, but it’s not directed toward Renee. Just don’t look for the scene that seems to keep recurring in Demi’s dreams. You won’t find it. If you read If Only without the expectation of anyone chasing Renee down a beach or anywhere else, you’ll enjoy it.

Length:  202 Pages
Print:  $9.99
Digital:  $2.99

Thanks for visiting. Rose, Julie, Donna, & Rochelle

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