Just Down The Road by Jodi Thomas
- ISBN-13: 9780425246924
- Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
- Publication date: 4/3/2012
- Source: From Publisher
Harmony, Texas, is a place where dreams are born. As the townspeople face unexpected endings and new beginnings, they also come face to face with themselves—and what’s most important in life…
When Tinch Turner lost his wife, he gave up on living. Now he spends his nights brooding, boozing, and brawling. When one of his escapades lands him in the ER, he finds himself staring up at the beautiful new doctor in town. For the first time in years, he feels a spark, but Addison Spencer wants nothing to do with the unruly rancher—or any man for that matter. She’s only in Harmony four months, long enough for the trouble she left behind to be over. But then a vulnerable little boy barrels into both their lives, forcing them out of the past—and into a future where love is just down the road…
In the meantime, as Reagan Truman grieves for her beloved uncle, she finds comfort in the makeshift family she’s made in Harmony—and in a new baby, the first born in the Wright Funeral Home in 45 years, proving to everyone that life does go on…
I was very excited for the next installment in the Harmony series to come out and I was not left disappointed. So much happens and change for the town’s people of Harmony, Texas in Just Down The Road. Not only do we get to meet a few new members of town but we get to revisit the members we have already meet and get caught up on their lives. One of my favorite parts about this series is that it follows so many lives yet does not overwhelm the reader or cut anyone’s story short. Jodi Thomas is amazing at finding the balance in the characters.
The main story line of Just Down The Road is that of Tinch Turner, who lost his wife to cancer a few years ago and has really given up on life. He gets himself into more trouble and well the town just feels pity for him. One night that trouble lands him in the Emergency Room and face to face with Addison Spencer, the new doctor in town. It is clear from the beginning that Addison has issues of her own and wants nothing to do with Tinch but somehow there is just some spark there that she cannot deny. That is only intensified one night when a little boy shows up at her home in the middle of a mess. The little boy, Jamie, is Tinch’s sister-in-law’s son, who Tinch didn’t know existed. Jamie’s mother was murdered and had left a will that Jamie was to go to Tinch. In the middle of the sheriff trying to dropped Jamie off to Tinch, Jamie takes off and ends up at Addison’s rent house just down the road from Tinch. The boy quickly adopts both Tinch and Addison. Addison begins to stay the night at Tinch’s home to help take care of Jamie and keep him happy. Both Addison and Tinch battle their inner demons when it comes to relationships and how they feel about each other. Both of them are very stubborn.
This main story line was heartfelt and touching. It was painful at first to know what Jamie had gone through but then a blessing to see how this one little boy can change the lives of adults who thought they were stuck and there was nothing left for them. When I posted a teaser of this book, it was about some painful bruising that Jamie had. I was excited for someone to recognize that Jodi Thomas is great at make a child like this a hero in the end.
This alone would have been a great book but what makes it outstanding in my point of view is that we also get to revisit Reagan and her situation. Her uncle whom took her in passes away early in this story and she is faced with grieving for him and worrying about Noah, her rodeo riding best friend, who has not been returning any phone calls when she needs him the most. When Noah does show up, he finds Big at the house and the men have words. Reagan has to figure out how to balance the two best friends she has and if she wants more from one of them.
Next there is Tyler. He is dealing with Karen, the love of his life away on her last mission in the army and unable to contact him and the young woman, Autumn, who he took in and is due to have her baby any day. While this story line is not primary a lot changes for Tyler in the last little bit of the book and I am crazy excited to see what come up next for him.
These are the major story lines but there are a few more smaller ones, as well. It will be interesting what Harmony #5 brings. I didn’t think that I could enjoy the series any more than I already did but boy was I wrong. The writing and plot of this book was extremely well done. I hope that you will check it out and Jodi Thomas’ guest post on my blog from yesterday. If you like strong romance with a lot of plot and stuff going on check this series out!
4 Very Strong Penguins!