Last Chance Family

Last Chance Family

3.7 4
by Hope Ramsay
     
 

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Mike Taggart has always been willing to take a gamble. But these stakes are just way too high - there's no way he's prepared to become a legal guardian to his five-year-old niece. His only option is to head from Las Vegas to Last Chance to sort things out as quickly as possible. Problem is, he arrives to find an inconsolable little girl, her sick cat, and a

Overview

Mike Taggart has always been willing to take a gamble. But these stakes are just way too high - there's no way he's prepared to become a legal guardian to his five-year-old niece. His only option is to head from Las Vegas to Last Chance to sort things out as quickly as possible. Problem is, he arrives to find an inconsolable little girl, her sick cat, and a gorgeous veterinarian he can't get out of his mind.

Charlene Polk has two talents: healing sick critters and falling in love with the wrong men. Mike has trouble written all over him, but she can't leave him in the lurch. And the more time she spends with the sexy high roller, the more she sees that this ready-made family is the best stroke of luck they've ever had . . .

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"4 Stars! Ramsay uses a light-toned plot and sweet characters to illustrate some important truths in this entry in the series."—RT Book Reviews"

Last Chance captures the essence of Southern charm and quirkiness. I'm totally captivated!"—Sherryl Woods, New York Times bestselling author"

Is there anything more compelling than a shattered hero with a tender heart trying desperately to get his life back together - and to avoid falling for the woman who has given him grief since he was a teenager? Ramsay's latest visit to Last Chance, S.C., is a first-class romance, with compelling characters and a real sense of location - the town is practically a character on its own. This entry is sure to keep Ramsay's fan base growing."—RT Book Reviews on Last Chance Book Club"

4 Stars! Ramsay's romance packs just enough heat in this holiday-inspired story, with lead characters who will induce both belly laughs and smiles. Her hero and heroine are in for rough times, but their heartache and longing had me longing right along with them."—RT Book Reviews on Last Chance Christmas"

4 1/2 stars! Get ready for a story to remember...with characters that define eccentric, off the wall and bonkers, but most of all they're enchantingly funny and heartwarmingly charming."—RT Book Reviews on Last Chance Beauty Queen"

Witty, touching, and absolutely delightful - this story has heart!"—JoAnn Ross, New York Times bestselling author of The Homecoming on Welcome to Last Chance"

Welcome to Last Chance is an impressive start to a charming new series, featuring quirky characters you won't soon forget."—Barbara Freethy, New York Times bestselling author of At Hidden Falls"

Last Chance, South Carolina, is a caring community filled with the promise of hope. Come for a visit!"—Lori Wilde, New York Times bestselling author of The Welcome Home Garden Club"

Ramsay strikes an excellent balance between tension and humor as she spins a fine yarn."—Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Welcome to Last Chance"

A sweet confection . . . This first of a projected series about the Rhodes brothers offers up Southern hospitality with a bit of grit. Romance readers will be delighted."—Library Journal on Welcome to Last Chance

Library Journal
12/01/2014
When Las Vegas gambler and day trader Mike Taggart is named guardian of his five-year-old niece, Rainbow, after his half-sister is murdered, he knows he's absolutely the wrong person for the job—and his younger half-brother, a Methodist minister in Last Chance, SC, might be just right. The only problem is that Mike hasn't seen Timmy since their father walked out with him when Timmy was three, and Timmy might not even remember him. But Mike is determined to see that Rainbow has the home he never had—he even has in mind the perfect wife for his brother, veterinarian Charlene Polk. Too bad Mike is attracted to her. VERDICT Overflowing with small-town Southern charm, this latest addition to Ramsay's engaging series pairs two emotionally wounded protagonists with a resilient, adorable moppet and a community of mostly caring folks to whip up a gentle, irresistible romance. Ramsay (Inn at Last Chance) lives in Fairfax, VA.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781455556434
Publisher:
Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
11/25/2014
Series:
Last Chance Series , #8
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
358,978
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Hope Ramsay grew up on the North Shore of Long Island, but every summer Momma would pack her off under the care of Aunt Annie to go visiting with relatives in the midlands of South Carolina. Her extended family includes its share of colorful aunts and uncles, as well as cousins by the dozens, who provide the fodder for the characters you'll find in Last Chance, South Carolina. She's a two-time finalist in the Golden Heart and is married to a good ol' Georgia boy who resembles every single one of her heroes. She lives in Fairfax, Virginia, where you can often find her on the back deck, picking on her thirty-five-year-old Martin guitar.

You can learn more at:
HopeRamsay.com
Facebook.com/Hope.Ramsay
Twitter, @HopeRamsay.

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Last Chance Family 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
janeeyre01 More than 1 year ago
Great book, Great characters. Rainbow is precious. Hero and heroine are great. I hope Dave gets his happy ending.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Disappointment. Was a dark story. Not as snappy as first books by author. Too preachy with many issues. Missed the rhodes family.
SusanFrank 11 months ago
Very good story of redemption and second chances. Mike is a professional gambler in Las Vegas when he finds out that his younger sister has died, leaving him as guardian of his five year old niece, Rainbow. He feels completely unqualified for the job, so tracks down the half-brother he hasn't seen since he was five, and is now a preacher in Last Chance. He feels that Tim would be a better father figure, so he picks up his niece and her cat and heads to Last Chance. Unfortunately for him, his niece, already traumatized by her mother's death, isn't taking to him very well, nor is her cat. As soon as they arrive in Last Chance he looks up a vet for the cat, and meets Charlene. He's floored by her beauty, but not too happy with her judgmental attitude about the way he's taking care of Rainbow. Then his half-brother, Tim, isn't sure he believes what Mike is telling him. All Mike wants to do is find someone more suitable than he is to raise Rainbow and get back to his life. But the town of Last Chance isn't going to make it that easy for him. Tim needs time to verify what Mike has told him, so he convinces Mike to stay in town for a couple weeks. He even finds an apartment for them, which just happens to be next door to Charlene's. Mike figures that Tim is going to need a mother for Rainbow and has fixated on Charlene as the perfect candidate, a fixation that seems to be confirmed by the town matchmaker. I really liked Mike. Even though he seems to be trying to dump Rainbow off on his brother, it's because he doesn't believe that he is a fit guardian for her. He carries a lot of guilt over what he sees as his failure to protect Rainbow's mother, his little sister, when she was younger. It was pretty amusing to see his efforts at pushing Tim and Charlene together, especially considering his own attraction to her. I also loved seeing how sweet he really was with little Rainbow. He didn't think he would be a good father, but he was doing everything right with her (except for the cat). I also liked Charlene. She was a bit judgmental at first, but once she got past that hurdle, she was wonderful. She, too, has some guilt dogging her from mistakes made when she was younger. She has had terrible luck in picking men, starting with her college boyfriend, who left her pregnant when her father offered to buy him off. Her biggest guilty feelings stem from that pregnancy and the pressure from her parents that she succumbed to. However, that same experience has made her much more empathetic with Rainbow, and I loved the way that she connected with the little girl. She's also very attracted to Mike, but sees him as just as disastrous a choice as the other men. I loved seeing the relationship develop between them. At first it was just as friends, as Charlene did her best to help Mike through various crises. But the more time they spent together, the more the attraction grew. Mike desperately tried to resist, as he was shoving her toward his brother, but it became harder for him to picture them together. I loved the way that things came to a head at the bachelor auction, though Mike was still resisting the obvious. It took some straight talk from the family lawyer and Tim for Mike to finally see the truth. I loved his big moment at the end, in the rain, cat and all. Due to space limitations, review continued at: http://susans2016readingblog.blogspot.com/2016/03/last-chance-family-hope-ramsay-forever.html
Sophia-Rose1 More than 1 year ago
If I wasn't already totally sold on this series, this book would have sealed the deal- a sad little orphaned girl, a cranky cat, a gambler who needs to be someone's sure bet, an allergic preacher, a pretty vet getting a second chance, a bachelor auction, three sweet kittens, and a matchmaker's prophecy. Yep, this was just a whole bowl full of home town goodness. It's a romance set against the backdrop of a quirky, nosey, well-meaning small town between a man and woman who must fall in love with the idea of a family and getting beyond the issues of their pasts. This is a book far along in the Last Chance series, but it will work just fine as a standalone or out of order. It's more fun reading them in order so the people and their situations popping in and out in the background make more sense, but not absolutely necessary. The story opens with Mike Taggart arriving in town with a sad, silent, tearful niece, Rainbow, who just watched her mother get murdered and is now stuck with an uncle she never knew who has a lot of conflicting feelings roiling around inside him too. Mike feels guilty over his little half-sister, Angie from the point he left her behind as a kid to get away from an abusive boyfriend of their alcoholic mother to letting her flounder on her own to now, when he has her daughter in tow and has no idea what to do for her other than to bring her to his other half-brother, Timmy. Mike, as a gambler and a guy with issues, knows he is not the person to bring up a little girl and so he feels that the Rev. Timothy Lake his long lost half-brother is a better bet. But first things first, he has to get Rainbow's cat to a vet because the thing seems sick with all its weepy-eyed wheezing and sneezing. Charlene Polk makes a quick assessment of the situation in her waiting room and jumps to a lot of conclusions about the expressionless man, the bedraggled bi-racial child and the cat she has clutched like a stuffed animal. Her own past and its mistakes come raring to the surface so along with a dose of medicine for the cat she delivers a dose of advice to the cold man who may or may not be who and what he says he is which naturally gets her a 'butt out, lady' type response. If only she could, but seeing Rainbow and Mike triggers something in her that she would rather ignore and can't. Mike is all wrong for her even if he isn't what she thought he was at that first meeting. He still plans to leave town so there's nothing for her there, right? Mike thought he could just leave Rainbow with Timmy, but it’s not that simple. Tim has no recollection of an older half-brother or living with Mike, his mom and his dad in Chicago. He only remembers his dad and the woman he thought of as mother in their Atlanta home. If Mike's telling the truth, then his dad lied to him. Tim is cautious to believe the man who has arrived with a grieving niece in tow, but he can't imagine what the guy has to gain by lying. Still, he'll investigate and proceed with caution. In the meantime, he points Mike and Rainbow toward a sub-let condo of a parishioner staying in Florida and a child therapist to help with Rainbow's issues of grief, trauma and not speaking. He has to keep the pair at a distance for a few reasons the least of which is he is allergic to Rainbow's cat. Mike settles in temporarily to the Last Chance community while he waits to transfer Rainbow to his brother. He has several further encounters with the beautiful, but critical Dr. Polk the Vet as his next door neighbor and a nosey well-meaning older lady across the hall who belongs to Timmy's church. Slowly he learns what it means to have a whole group of people there to help and make him feel a part of something. As time goes by, it gets harder to think of separating from Rainbow, Charlene and everyone at Last Chance to go back to Vegas, but he is determined to do what is right by Rainbow in giving her the family that he never had and doesn't deserve. This story is full of a lot of feel-good, heartwarming, humorous yumminess. Each of the main characters- Mike, Charlene, Rainbow and Tim- all were engaging and I was truly into their stories. This isn't just the story of a hero and heroine. There are actually a few stories weaving in and out of each other even connecting in places. It flows gently with only a few spikes of excitement. The passionate moments are even understated. The main issues are Charlene finally dealing with her parents and the guilt of her past. Mike learning that he doesn't have to rely on himself. Mike and Charlene both realizing that love is a chance that is worth taking. Tim getting a family he didn't expect and a romance of his own. Angel maybe getting his chance with someone who hasn't yet accepted who and what they are. And of course Rainbow and her kitty clan finding the home they need. It was just one huge story that touched on important emotional things, but did it in a light, heartwarming way so that the reading experience was easy and cozy. Only niggle is that I felt a few threads were left dangling and left me curious. I could figure out where most of them were going and maybe that's the point- a few were still not finished yet and still going on. So I guess, I'll try to be patient and see what happens in the next book. After all, I thought Amanda and Grant's story ended abruptly and here things were in this one with Amanda getting a pretty good sized role and I got a peek back into how things were going for her. So, to wrap it up, this was a delightful small town romance read in a series that is one of my favorite cozy reads. The passion is on the sweeter end with the romance and character development easing along slowly. Contemporary Romance fans who like small town, southern life, and quirky characters should give this book/series a look-see. My thanks to Net Galley for the opportunity to read this one in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago