Desperate and determined, Maggie Stanley grabs her small baby and runs into the snowy Idaho night. In her loneliest, blackest hour, she unexpectedly finds a warmth and comfort she has never known in the tender compassion of a handsome, down-and-out stranger. In Rafe Kendrick, Maggie recognizes a soul wounded like her own—though she knows she must never trust any man ever again.
Rafe is more than he seems—an enigmatic man of secrets who could give Maggie the moon, had he not vowed to spend his life alone. But sometimes love's flames can transform a cold world into paradise—and a man who's lost nearly everything, a woman who's forgotten how to dream, and the helpless child who needs them both can become that most wondrous creation: a family.
Anderson's newest contemporary romance (after Simply Love) begins with a rescue: vagabond Rafe Kendrick prevents Maggie Stanley from being raped by boxcar bums. Saving Maggie and her baby gives Rafe's life meaning again, and he decides he'll do anything to keep them from harm's way. In order to protect Maggie from her ne'er-do-well stepfather, Lonnie, Rafe contacts his family, who hasn't heard from him since he abandoned his profitable ranch after an accident that killed his wife and children. Although she distrusts his motives, Maggie returns with Rafe to his Oregon ranch and they marry. As Maggie heals in body and spirit, their love becomes mutual. While the premise is riveting, the Cinderella-like aspects of the story are overdone, and Maggie's stepfather's drive to do evil is almost cartoonish. Rafe is not only a successful rancher--he's got $50 million in the bank. Equally unrealistic is the premise that Rafe can stop drinking without suffering any symptoms of withdrawal. However, Anderson is a strong storyteller, and the book should appeal to fans of the genre despite its clich s.