Title: Poppy’s Secret
Author: Andrew Grey
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press/Dreamspun Desires
Length: 190 Pages
At a Glance: All said and done, I loved this book because it’s a story exemplifying the theme that love can conquer all.
Reviewed By: Taz
Blurb: A second chance born of love.
Pat Corrigan and Edgerton “Edge” Winters were ready to start a family—or so Pat thought. At the last minute, Edge got cold feet and fled. Pat didn’t bother telling him the conception had already gone through and little Emma was on her way. He didn’t want a relationship based on obligation. He’d rather raise his daughter on his own.
Nine years later, Emma and her Poppy are doing fine. Edge isn’t. He realizes what he threw away by leaving, and he’s back to turn his life around and reclaim his family. It’ll take a lot to prove to Pat that he’s a new man, and even if Edge succeeds, the secret Pat has hidden for years might shatter their dreams all over again.
Review: What a read!
Poppy’s Secret by Andrew Grey was an emotional journey filled with real-life problems, presented through the raw and believable lives of the characters. If I were to grasp onto a theme for this book, I think of forgiveness, second chances, or chasing one’s dreams. All fit and are beautifully portrayed through a storyline that progresses smoothly. No words are wasted as the tale unfolds in a natural and, at times, nail-biting way. But you’ll have to read to the end for me to tell you the real theme that emerged as the strongest.
There are four main characters in the book and, other than the adorable Emma, each changes and grows in satisfying ways. Pat (“Poppy”) is an amazing father, but he has a secret he’s kept, one that could turn his world upside down, leaving him in the worst place he’s ever been in his life. Edge has to come to grips with how he’d wasted years upon years of his life, allowing fear to dictate his choices, and then, realizing just how much he’d actually missed out on. And Evelyn, Pat’s mom, who lived her life giving Pat freedom, too much freedom in a form that would be considered neglect by today’s terms, who allows the lessons she’s learned in her life to guide Pat as he stumbles to pick up the scattered pieces of everyone’s lives.
In reading this book, I kept finding myself wondering what I would have done in each of the characters’ shoes. Each is so flawed and made decisions that deeply impacted other people’s lives. While it would have been easy to dislike these characters for the things they’ve done, the author has managed to juxtapose their lives at the time they made their choices with their lives in the present. This is not done through flashbacks, which would have been the easier choice. Instead, the past and present merge through the discussions the characters have with one another.
Of course, the main love interest is between Pat and Edge, but the sex between them wasn’t thrown in just for the sake of reading some hot, steamy scenes. In fact, they aren’t drawn out or nearly as explicit as most erotic romance stories get. The physical expression of their love only serves to show how the two men are drawn to each other in mind and body.
If I were asked which character was my favorite, I really couldn’t say. I loved Pat for his steadiness and his devotion to Emma. Edge should have been unlikable, but the way he lay himself bare and vulnerable, seeking happiness, made him very real and likable. Plus, he was so cute with Emma. And even Pat’s mom, who admitted herself to not being the best kind of parent to Pat, having made so many wrong choices, clearly adored her son and grandchild.
So, all said and done, I loved this book because it’s a story exemplifying the theme that love can conquer all.
You can buy Poppy’s Secret here: