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    Forgiveness is Freeing

    I enjoyed this 3rd book in the series set in Pinecrest, Washington. It's always fun to revisit former characters although this is certainly a standalone book. Grady and Maria have a very complicated relationship. Grady was married with two children when he discovered his wife was having an affair with someone in his church and she ultimately died (we don't find out how she died, however). This has left him very bitter and grieving, obviously. Maria was his wife's friend and Grady thinks that she knew about the affair (which she didn't) so he holds that against her. When Grady gets a new job in a new town, Maria is already working there and he doesn't think he can work there, so closely by her. However, they both clear the air and decide to give it a try. Maria really likes Grady's daughters and begins to bond with them. I have two thoughts about this story. First, I really liked Maria and how hard she tried to "make the best of things" and give Grady the benefit of the doubt. She was willing to go above and beyond in not letting his behavior make her bitter and she always tried to witness the love of God to him. Second, on the other hand, Maria let Grady take advantage of her "goodness" too much and it bugged me! Grady was a workaholic (just like her father) and even though Maria constantly thought in her mind how much she hated Grady not keeping his promises to his girls, she always bailed him out and didn't "call him out". He might have had good reasons but still, every time he asked her to babysit or do anything, she reluctantly said "ok". There's no way I think a person in her circumstances (her dad's example) would have without calling him out! She shouldn't have been a doormat! But, it was a good story and I liked the daughters!
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