Heartsight by Kay Springsteen
Publication Date: February 7th, 2016
Pages: 222 (kindle)
Genre: Contemporary Adult
My Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
On a secluded beach in North Carolina, three lonely people find hope in each other.
Trish Evers is an artist and single mother, who has inherited her grandmother's Bed and Breakfast in a North Carolina coastal town. Though she must sell the house, she decides to bring her daughter to the beach for one last summer vacation in her childhood town.
Bella is a six-year-old girl who has Down syndrome. Rejected by her father, Trish, is the only parent she's ever known. Bella likes to explore the beach and has a tendency to wander off. One day, Bella goes exploring on her own, and Trish finds her in the company of an intriguing stranger.
Dan Conway is a U.S. Marine, who had been born into a family of Marines. Now blind as a result of combat injuries and unable to "suit up," he feels he no longer has a purpose in life. He's come home to the beach, where he spends his days in solitude. Dan must learn to believe in himself and to love life again, which he begins to do through his interactions with Bella and Trish. When a hurricane strikes, and Bella wanders off again, her only hope for rescue is Dan.
Working within the confines of his blindness, he must overcome his fear of failure and recall his training in order to search for the little girl and bring her to safety.
I've been in kind of a reading slump over the past couple of weeks so I decided to pick up this review copy from LibraryThing, expecting it to be kind of light and fluffy.
Well, it really isn't.
Trish is a single mom whose daughter, Bella, has Down syndrome. Trish's challenges don't so much lie with Bella as they do with her finances and her worthless ex-husband. Bella is a happy and curious child who is portrayed well. I work with children and am always interested in how people write them. I think Springsteen did a nice job here.
Dan is blind and just happens to meet Bella on the beach one day. After that she's hooked and so is he. Of course, it takes Trish a little bit longer to fall for Dan, but it's okay.
This story is the definition of a slow-burn. Each of these characters have their flaws and their reservations, but they are very well suited for each other. I love some of the scenes of them together where Trish describes things for Dan. It's excellent character development and you can tell that Springsteen knows her characters.
There is, of course the necessary drama in the form of the annoying ex. I don't think I've ever wanted a character to get swept away in a hurricane, but Gary made me will it really hard! He's a jerk and he's mean. I hope he didn't live happily ever after.
The ending felt a bit anticlimactic. I figured there would be more drama considering what was already happening, but that didn't happen. All in all, a decent read. Not so light and fluffy, but it still made me smile.
Thanks to LibraryThing for the review copy.