Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Last Chance Hero - A Review

Published - September 2015, Revell Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group
Series - A Place to Call Home Book 4
Author - Cathleen Armstrong
Title - Last Chance Hero
Format - ebook, paper
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Dr. Jessica McLeod is excited about starting up her new practice in the small town of Last Chance, New Mexico. There's one problem. The townspeople are reluctant to switch doctors even though they are thrilled that Last Chance finally has its own doctor. Jess longs to get involved in the community. Her best option to do so is to attend the high school football games. Jess knows absolutely nothing about football and doesn't understand the way that EVERYONE in the town seems to live and breathe football. To complicate matters, Jess finds herself drawn to the new football coach, Andy Ryan. Andy's the town's golden boy. He was on the football team during the town's Glory Days and went on to play in the NFL. Now that he's back, the town expects a return of the Glory Days. Andy tries to tell people that this is a different time, different team, but the expectations are very high. As he gets to know Jessica, he discovers that she's the only person in the town who doesn't care about the Glory Days. Yet when they clash over the treatment of an injured player, will their friendship survive?

I've read all of the others in this series and enjoyed them. This one didn't have the same feel to it. For starters, it is classified as a romance, but I didn't really pick up on the romance. Truthfully, I thought that Andy and Jessica's friendship was in fact opening doors to their romance. But I wouldn't go so far to classify this as a romance. It's a sweet story, and I did read it quickly. This one also left a lot of issues unresolved. I also found that it ended rather abruptly.

It was fun to reconnect with some of the other characters from the Last Chance books. But I wish that there had been more to the development of Andy & Jess's romance. Maybe that'll come more to play in the next book. I don't know.

I'll admit that I'm not a football fan. My knowledge is slightly more than that of Jess's. So her trying to understand why everyone seemed to live and breathe football made sense to me. I got that. And I understand that she was willing to make an attempt. I liked that about her. I didn't really like the fact that Jess would use her status as a doctor to ensure that football related activities did not take one of her patient's focus off of his grades. I loved Andy's conversation with Jess after that. He made her think about the student and was she really acting in the kid's best interest.

There were a lot of things I wish had been developed more or even resolved. Andy and his father's relationship had potential. Jess's faith journey. Her suspicions of  one of her patients. These are just to name a few.

Don't get me wrong. I liked the book. I didn't love it. It's just ok. It didn't have as much depth as I'd hoped. But it was enjoyable.

I received this book for free from Revell for the purpose of reviewing. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of Friday Night Lights, football, contemporary fiction

Rating - 3 stars

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