Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Baggage Claim by Cathe Swanson Giveaway

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About the Book

Book: Baggage Claim  
Author: Cathe Swanson
Genre: Christian Suspense/Romance  
Release Date: February 14, 2017  

There had to be at least one healthy branch on his family tree…

Who can he trust?

Ben Taylor, widower and father of four lively children, enjoys his easy, uncomplicated life. He likes his work and has a competent nanny to manage his household. Everything is good until he decides to seek out his biological parents and discovers a family tree with tangled roots and broken branches.

His comfortable life crumbles when he gets caught up in a criminal network of fraud and conspiracy at his new job. When Ben is forced into a dangerous alliance, he scrambles to find a safe situation and protection for his children before setting out to clear his name—all without getting himself killed in the process.

A nanny with a past…

Becoming a nanny was the perfect solution when Teresa Cooper needed a place to hide ten years ago, but now that she’s no longer in danger, she’s ready to move on and make a new life for herself. When Ben asks her to take the children to an unknown relative in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, she finds herself in hiding again, this time with four children in tow.

As the children explore the wilderness of the Upper Peninsula, Teresa begins to wonder about God’s plan for her future. Who is this stranger Ben trusts with his children? Why here? Can a city-bred nanny find joy in this wild corner of God’s creation?

My review:

This novel has two plot lines. One is Ben, a single father of four delightful children. Ben had been adopted and is now looking to discover his birth parents. In the course of the novel he unwittingly gets involved in an insurance fraud scam. I learned quite a bit about how the scam worked and how I should pay attention to my medical bills. That was quite interesting.

The other plot line revolves around Teresa, a woman who escaped from her abusing husband and is now a nanny. Ben has hired her and she turns out to be a great nanny.

Much of the novel is about Ben's job. He is an assistant physical therapist and we readers tag along with his appointments. We also get to experience some of the home life of Ben and the kids and the very capable nanny Teresa.

There is a little bit of suspense as Ben fears for his family's welfare while the insurance scam is being investigated. There is also a little bit of romance, but not much. Ben seemed to be a little naive while Teresa is a savvy woman. Ben's kids are the real show stoppers, however. Their characters are well crafted and fun.

I felt the novel was a bit long for the intertwined plots. The relationship focus of Teresa changes in the latter part of the novel as does the plot focus. That was a bit of a surprise after so much of the first part of the novel having been focused on Ben. The Christian message included was well done.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

About the Author

Cathe Swanson lives in Wisconsin with her husband of 32 years. They enjoy spending time with their family and being outdoors, kayaking, hiking, birdwatching and fishing, but summer is short in Wisconsin, so it’s important to have indoor hobbies, too. Cathe has been a quilter and teacher of quiltmaking for over 25 years, and she enjoys just about any kind of creative work, especially those involving fiber or paper. She enjoys writing stories with eccentric characters of all ages. Her books will make you laugh and make you cry – and then make you laugh again.

Guest Post from Cathe Swanson

When I was in high school, I thought I might like to become an occupational therapist. Instead, I got married, had babies, raised the children and launched them into the world. I took a few years to regroup, and then I started thinking about what I wanted to do with the rest of my life.

Shortly after that, my dad had a stroke, and when he came home from the hospital, I was fascinated by the work of the visiting therapists. I did some research and learned that physical and occupational therapy assistants make pretty good money and are able to do the best part of the job – the therapy. Therapists are often bogged down in paperwork and periodic assessments. The assistant has all the fun, and it’s just a 5-semester program.

So I trotted on down to the local community college and asked what I had to do to get signed up. The counsellor talked for a while about prerequisites, petitions, waiting lists, internships, and other such things. Eventually I realized she was trying to tell me that I was too old to embark on this career. Too taken-aback to be offended, I went home and wrote a book about it instead. After all, I’d invested a lot of time in research.

I’d been writing stories for years, and already had the bones of Baggage Claim. Once I gave my young hero a job as a physical therapy assistant, the story took on life. My mother’s interest in genealogy had sparked a question: What if a nice, normal person wanted to track down their biological family and it blew up in their face? So that’s where I sent my hero, and as one of my reviewers said, “It was not a Hallmark moment.”

I’m very happy as an author and have no real interest in becoming an occupational therapist. Indeed, that rejection was a turning point for me. I could have pushed forward and got that degree, but instead I went home and wrote. I have no regrets.

Blog Stops

March 29: A Greater Yes
March 30: Genesis 5020
April 1: Quiet Quilter
April 2: autism mom
April 7: Carpe Diem
April 9: Bigreadersite
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. My comments are an independent and honest review.

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