John Adair is a proud man who was once unjustly accused of stealing. Nine years later he comes back to the small town of Pitney to get even with the company that had maligned his reputation, but one person interferes with his plans.
Ellen Hamilton is the privileged daughter of the most powerful man in Pitney. Back when she first knew John she was a blossoming and passionate young woman fresh out of college with the world at her calling and love in her heart. Now she is a shadow of her former self, believing her own story about being content running the local library and living her own brand of independence.
This 1950s period piece makes a couple of important points: 1.) Women had few options in this era, and 2.) Blind accusations (McCarthyism) can ruin lives.
Sparks reignite when John and Ellen come face-to-face at a small party hosted by Ellen’s mother the night John arrives in town. As the story unfolds their attraction cannot be denied or contained, regardless of the complications of her family’s business and John’s unjust reputation. Even when all seems lost this reader never gave up on their chance to claim a true and lasting love.
The secondary characters are also well-written and believable, including Ellen’s father, Sam, a controlling and devious man who won’t back down until he gets whatever he wants, the honest-to-God cowboy, Trigg, the busybody journalist Lila, and John’s secretary Cindy, on and on the characters came to life for this reader. George, the grand-fatherly mentor to both Ellen and John was my favorite.
Engaging prose plus an intricate and often fascinating story about cut-throat business practices in the early 1950s, plus a tender romance between reunited lovers had me engrossed until the triumphant and thoroughly satisfying ending in The Sweetheart Deal.
Interested in diversity (aka multiculturalism) in your romances? Check out these recent books by Lynne Marshall