SEALed With a Kiss
Sourcebooks, 2008 (2008)
Reviewed by Martina Bexte
hen it comes to being a hero, Navy SEAL Jackson Graham has no equals. Dealing with his estranged and non-communicative four-year-old son, however, leaves the tough soldier floundering at sea. After his wife's sudden death in a car crash, Jax believes the best recourse is to relinquish custody of his son to his maternal grandmother. How can he possibly raise Tyler when he's so often away on either a mission or mandatory training exercises? Despite this decision, however, Jax's CO orders him on a month's leave to spend quality time with Tyler before making a final decision.
amily therapist Pickett Sessoms was only doing her friends a last minute favour when she agreed to batten down their beachfront home in preparation for an approaching hurricane. She is not prepared to deal with Jax Graham and his scared and lonely little boy. She knows firsthand how tough military marriages are to maintain and the toll they take on children. However, it is not her position to judge - as a therapist she can only advise, and it's clear that Jax is secure with his decision to relinquish custody of Tyler.
ut when Pickett opens her home to them to escape the encroaching storm, she sees cracks in Jax's tough veneer. As he and Tyler get to know each other all over again they begin to establish an unshakeable bond. The fact that she and Jax also feel a keen attraction doesn't help the situation since the last thing Jax wants is a relationship with a
woman. And Pickett has absolutely no intention of getting involved with a military man, especially a SEAL. But sometimes falling in love doesn't give you a choice and you have to follow your heart.
ebut author Daughtridge shines in this character driven story of a father faced with a tough decision - give up his son or his beloved career? Jax and Pickett are compelling, believable characters with plenty of issues to work through. Each experiences considerable personal challenge as their relationship grows from careful to undeniable, despite their best intentions to eventually walk away from something so obviously meant to be.
SEALed with a Kiss
is a beautifully written and often poignant contemporary romance and Mary Margaret Daughtridge a compelling new voice whose gift for storytelling makes her an author to watch.
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