Published by Quarry Road Publishing on September 12th 2016
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Drew Harrington loves baseball, drumming and Cassie Anteros, although not necessarily in that order. After his parents die, Drew finds comfort in all the wrong places, until Cassie discovers him passed out, facedown, in his own vomit.
Cassie Anteros is a big-hearted, sheltered princess who Drew abandons when he leaves school to get himself together. After graduation, with an Ivy League degree in hand and years of grooming behind her, Cassie is well-positioned to take over her father’s Wall Street firm, but a lump in her left breast sets her life on a different path.
Now almost a decade later, he’s the very sexy general manager of the Boston Blues baseball team, and she’s an award-winning baker in Baltimore. When the two come face-to-face, the earth trembles under their feet, threatening to swallow them whole. She still owns a piece of his soul, and he lives-on in her heart, but is that enough for Drew and Cassie to get a second chance at love, or has time and suffering already sealed their fate?
~~Reviewed by AnnMarie~~
Petite Madeleine is the third book in the Meadows Shore series by by Eva Charles. I haven’t read the other books in the series, but this book can easily be read as a stand alone one.
It’s the story about Drew Harrington, once a baseball player, but now the general manager of the Boston Blues pro baseball team. He lost his parents 10 years ago, and couldn’t handle the grief. He pushed aside everybody who loved him, and turned to various vices to help him cope. Eventually his girlfriend at the time stepped in when she found him at rock bottom. She called his family, they intervened, and took over his care. His girlfriend, the love of his life, he had to take a break from. He told her he would be in touch with her when he got his life together and they could carry on with their relationship.
The girl in question is Cassie Anteros. She comes from a rich family, and has the brains to work on Wall Street with her father. Work kept her busy, it kept her from thinking about Drew all the time. But then one day, something bigger came along to focus on…she was diagnosed with breast cancer at the tender age of 21. She knew that Drew would never cope with her having cancer, after what happened to him when his parents died. She moved away and made sure that Drew couldn’t find her. He was her soul mate but she had to put his survival before her happiness. After her diagnosis, Cassie had a mastectomy, and is on meds for another 3 years, but has been clear of cancer for 7 years. In that time, during all her surgery and rehabilitation she realised she wanted to do more with her life than just crunch numbers. She’s always loved baking, so she set up a bakery shop. Her life is kept busy with her baking, and she’s happy.
Both Drew and Cassie are sent for a whirl when one day they come across each other in her bakery. He went in for a coffee and pastries, and while he was thinking of Cassie and how she cooked the most delicious cakes, he hears her voice! He has never stopped loving her, and tried so desperately to find her, to no avail. And now he comes across her in a bakery, one he never knew she owned. He sees it as fate giving them another chance at love and he is thrilled. Cassie is less thrilled, but only because she worries about having to tell him about her cancer, cancer that can return within the next 3 years. She tries to put him off when he wants to have a meal with her, ‘for old times sake’. But he perseveres and they start having contact with each other again.
Can he convince her to give their love a chance, that he’s never stopped loving her. Cassie wants nothing more to be in Drew’s arms and in his life, in his bed, but she is so frightened about his reaction if she has to tell him about the mastectomy and cancer, so she keeps trying to push him away. Could he cope if she got sick again, could he cope if he lost her, and was it just her decision to make. Should she give in to her heart and let him win her, and let him know everything?
This was such a beautiful story about love the second time around. Drew is such a sweetheart and I love how he pursues Cassie. His reaction to her cancer was very well written and made perfect sense. Also it’s understandable how Cassie was scared to tell him. The author handled the whole breast cancer story line beautifully, it was factual, but at the same time it was so emotional. That said, one of the most moving parts of the story for me didn’t involve Cassie’s cancer directly. Drew is talking to the baseball team about cancer, and how many people know of somebody who has had it. But then he goes on to ask how many people had lost anybody, to anything, not just cancer, and got them thinking about how they grieved. I was in tears reading that part of the book. But don’t worry, it’s not all doom and gloom, there are many joyous, and funny moments in the book that will have you laughing out loud. There was a nice mix of emotions brought to the fore when reading this book, and I was more than happy with the ending.
On a personal note, my sister has survived breast cancer twice and although we are very close, she didn’t tell me some of the things I learned from this book, such as the side effects of the meds she (and Cassie) took. So even though I have experience of a loved one having breast cancer, I still learned something new from this story and am grateful to the author for writing about a subject that some still consider taboo. It was both educational, and a wonderful love story. One which I whole heartedly recommend.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.