Phaedra Patrick comes to the blog with her latest title, a story of bridging yesterday with tomorrow, finding connections and hope after a loss with
The Secrets of Love Story Bridge
Bridges. The bridges are a main character in this story – not only a bridge from one riverbank to another, but those bridges between past and present, yesterday and tomorrow, between two people separated or newly found. And Mitchell is at the center of the bridges, literally and figuratively as he works through his new ‘normal’ after the loss of his partner Anita, and how to move forward and do the best for his daughter, Poppy. Poppy knows that her father is grieving and sad- it makes him grumpy with everyone but her, and she’d like nothing more than to see him happy. But for Mitchell, his work is steadily reminding him of what he’s lost: removing random padlocks from bridges, placed by lovers with keys tossed into the water. He’s never been a fan of the tradition: it damages the bridges he so carefully designed and loves, but to have that combined with the blow to his heart with each engraved lock is just too much. He retreats into a ‘no feeling zone’, showing his displeasure in his demeanor, keeping everyone at arm’s length.
Until he reacts rather than thinks and saves a woman from drowning after jumping off the bridge. The attention made him uncomfortable, and he was more concerned than he realized. But never having gotten the woman’s name, he’s at a loss. Serendipity raises its head, and we learn that Poppy’s music teacher Liza is the woman’s sister, and she’d been missing for a year. Soon, Mitchell is drawn into helping Liza find her sister Yvette, and their connection is solid and clever. From the story in the news, many letters arrived, some heartbreaking, others to tell a ‘story’ of the rescue- all clever and adding plenty to the moments.
Mitchell, without even realizing it, is changing and becoming a better version of himself, growing and changing, able to work through his grief and show the world the man that Poppy knew he always was. His interactions with her, and her quiet (and not so) insertions into the story with that simplicity of reasoning that all children have was delightful and she stole the show every moment she was there. The letters, Liza, the other characters we meet and learn from, and the growth that Mitchell experiences while again redefining his life as a parent and a man, along with the child-heavy moments with Poppy provide a lovely story that is full of emotion and a small example of moving forward when circumstances change. My first book from Phaedra Patrick, it won’t be the last.
Title: The Secrets of Love Story Bridge
Author: Phaedra Patrick
Genre: British, Contemporary Woman's Fiction, Family Saga, Friendship, Grief, Humor elements, Romantic Elements, Second Chance, Setting: Britain
Published by: Park Row Books
Published on: 28 April, 2020
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Audio Length: 8 Hours: 2 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Google ♦Audible ♦Direct from Publisher
A single father gets an unexpected second chance at love in the heartwarming new novel from the author of The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper
It’s summer in the city and passions are soaring along with the temperature—for everyone but Mitchell Fisher, who hates all things romance. He relishes his job cutting off the padlocks that couples fasten to the famous “love story” bridge. Only his young daughter, Poppy, knows that behind his prickly veneer, Mitchell still grieves the loss of her mother.
Then one hot day, everything changes when Mitchell courageously rescues a woman who falls from the bridge into the river. He’s surprised to feel an unexpected connection to her, but she disappears before he can ask her name. Desperate to find out her identity, Mitchell is shocked to learn she’s been missing for almost a year. He teams up with her spirited sister, Liza, on a quest to find her again. However, she’s left only one clue behind—a message on the padlock she hung on the bridge.
Brimming with Phaedra Patrick’s signature charm and a sparkling cast of characters, The Secrets of Love Story Bridge follows one man’s journey to unlock his heart and discover new beginnings in the unlikeliest places.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.