Family Ties

Forever Always

Hidden Blessings

Love's Miracle

Resolution of Love

Someone Like You

 
Undeniably Yours by Jacquelin Thomas
(Arabesque/BET, $5.99, PG-13), ISBN 1-58314-131-6
****
Matthew St. Charles’ life has been on hold for more than two years. It has been a conscious choice motivated by love, grief and guilt. Matthew was introduced in Jacquelin Thomas’ 1999 romance, Forever Always. He is the twin brother of Martin St. Charles, the villain in the author’s debut novel, Hidden Blessings.

Near the end of Forever Always, Matt and Kaitlin Ransom had a big misunderstanding that ended their budding relationship. Kaitlin was headed to Phoenix on business when fate intervened and her plane crashed. Matthew was devastated and refused to believe that she was gone. Her body was never found and he spent the time since the crash trying to discover what happened.

Kaitlin was part of the large Ransom family. Her mother and nine siblings also felt her loss but have tried to move on. In an effort to put a bit of closure to their tragedy, the family eventually held a memorial service and erected a headstone atop an empty grave. But Kaitlin’s absence has been harder for some members of the family than others. Some have reportedly “seen” Kaitlin. There has also been a psychic revelation that Kaitlin is still alive, but in danger.

Shortly before her birthday, Kaitlin’s brother Ray is given evidence that indicates that his sister is very much alive. He delays giving his family false hopes, but he does contact Matthew. Galvanized into action, Matthew reunites with a few resourceful old friends and goes off to get the woman he loves. It is not an easy task, but Matthew will not be denied. I am particularly vague on where Kaitlin was found or what she has been doing because Thomas fans have waited two years for the resolution of this storyline.

Kaitlin and Matthew are finally reunited. Initially, they are extremely happy to see each other and grateful to have been given a second chance. At least Kaitlin is. Matthew has issues with how she has spent her time away from him. He has issues, but what he doesn’t want are explanations - because he never allows Kaitlin to give them to him. This, from a man who left his business in California on hold for more than two years to remain in Phoenix to lament the loss of his lady love. Be careful what you wish for.

Undeniably Yours is an action-adventure romance that will cause a few readers to suspend belief in a couple spots. There are several loose ends that I expect will be resolved in the next saga. Things don’t always add up - from a 10-month pregnancy to why Matthew didn’t contact the reserves earlier. There are at least two secondary romances. One works; one doesn’t.

Undeniably Yours is a story that will appeal to Thomas’ fans who crave for the continuing story of the Ransom family. And there is a lot for them to enjoy. The Ransoms are a large family - with siblings, spouses, children, other relatives and friends. It makes for a very busy book. New characters are literally born before your eyes.

I waffle between three and four hearts for this latest Ransom installment. It is worth a look.

--Gwendolyn Osborne


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