SETTING/TYPE: Contemporary Romance
REASON FOR READING: I got lucky and won this book from LibraryThing's Early Reviewer program. Since I'm a huge fan of DS, I was thrilled.
SUMMARY: from Deborah Smith's webite
A Connecticut heiress. A Florida cowboy.THOUGHTS/OPINIONS:
Her secret. His heart.
And the very special family she's come home to find.
A Gentle Rain is another heartwarming engaging story that I have come to expect from Deborah Smith.
Kara Whittenbrook is the daughter of two wealthy award-winning environmentalist parents who have recently died when their plane crashes in the Amazon jungle leaving her an heiress. While sorting through her parent's papers she is shocked to discover her adoption papers. So she confronts her uncle to find out how and why her parents adopted a child. He explains that her adopted parents wanted to tell her but they died before they felt she was secure in herself enough to handle the news. He also told her that her biological parents are mentally disabled and live on a ranch in Northern Florida.
Kara decides she wants to meet them but she is unsure of her welcome so she sets out for Florida as "Karen Johnson", an artist and harp player. The ranch is run by Ben Thocco and her biological parents, Mac and Lily, work for him. Mac was born with fetal alcohol syndrome and Lily was severely shaken as a baby. They have never mentioned having a child and Ben does not know about Kara. Ben's brother, Joey, has Downs Syndrome and a very bad heart and his prognosis is not good. Ben is a wonderfully kind man who has a lot on his shoulders . He is struggling to hold onto the ranch, take care of Joey, and employ other mentally handicapped adults besides Mac and Lily as ranch hands.
Circumstances bring Kara into life on the ranch and Mac and Lily are very drawn to her. She quickly finds herself a part of life on the ranch, cooking and cleaning and getting to know her birth parents . She and Ben are very attracted to each other but Ben feels there is more to Kara than she is revealing. Kara is unsure whether she should reveal herself to her parents but she eventually falls in love with them ... and Ben too. She can't resist secretly fixing some of the financial problems Ben faces with her vast fortune.
This heartwarming story is filled with gentle humor and sweet, endearing characters. The writing alternates between Kara's and Ben's point of view and works wonderfully well. The love between Ben and Kara develops slowly and you will fall in love with them and the special characters just as I did. Deborah Smith is an amazing author and it's too bad more people don't know about her. This is a very special book and I highly recommend.