This review is based on an ARC from netgalley.
This completely grabbed me from the start! Max and Kate meeting in the lobby of the hospital, and just the few moments they spend there, where Kate realizes Max has stopped drinking, and Max realizes that he has a daughter - WOW!
Max Montgomery is a real-estate mogul, from a rich family; Kate Hunter left him when he was in a drunken stupor, having become an alcoholic after learning a huge family secret. What he didn't know is that Kate was pregnant when she left him, and she was afraid of him because he was breaking furniture and she thought about how it would be to introduce a baby to that kind of life. What Kate didn't know is that Max became sober shortly after she left. When they meet again, it's in the lobby of the hospital, after Kate's dad has a stroke she comes back to help her mother out, and spend some time with both of her parents.
Max is really angry at first when he understands that Kate has kept his daughter from him. At the same time, he can understand her, he knows that he was behaving in ways incompatible with raising a baby at the time she left him.
It is clear from the start that Max is still in love with Kate, although he is upset about only getting to know Trisha when she's seven years old as well. The first meeting between father and daughter is pretty awkward, but it seems so real, exactly how I would imagine a grown man would interact with a little girl who's his daughter, but not knowing her yet, and not having a lot of experience around children.
Because the one thing she hadn't seen the day before when she'd visited him in her beautiful former house was the crystal vase her parents had scrimped and saved to buy as a wedding gift for her and Max (...) To this day he probably didn't even know he'd thrown it against the fireplace and shattered it into a million pieces, along with her heart - and their marriage. This confuses me a little, the crystal vase her parents gave them for their marriage is what actually pushed her to leave? That's a little shallow, and this story has been far from shallow so far!
I really like to see how both Max and Kate are trying to deal with the new versions of each other, but things become a tad melodramatic at times, and that is too bad. They also behave a little bit like insecure teenagers every now and then, and that seems a little strange, since they are both grown ups, secure in their lives and their jobs.
All in all a story I really liked, and I will for sure check out other books by Susan Meier, a sweet, easy romance, with flowing prose is not something I find everyday! I recommend this book to all romance lovers who like to have some humor and drama sprinkled on their story as well.