Got a kick out of the third book in this series. Kate Hewitt looks at an estranged mother/daughter named Abby and Laura Rhodes. I was more intrigued with the chapters that featured Laura, but Abby was compelling in her own way. I think that Hewitt smartly didn't have everything end up hearts and flowers since her books take a realistic look at things, while still simmering with a bit of romance in the background. The characters/relationships between 6 sets of women through the past 3 books is what is most important. Having a guy in your life is just gravy.
"A Mother Like Mine" has Abby and Laura Rhodes trying their best to have some sort of relationship with each other after Laura has left Abby's care to Laura's mother. Laura had Abby when she was 16 and two years after that moved to Manchester to work in a night club, eventually ending up in America (New York). After being fired from her job for being too old, (she's 42 people) Laura returns to Hartley-by-the-Sea realizing that if she never tries to have a relationship with Abby, all of her sacrifices she did will mean nothing. Abby rightfully so is angry her mother has returned, and her home life has turned upside down. Abby has a young son named Nath that she is trying to raise solo while also running her grandmother's shop. It's not what she dreamed of doing with her her life, but she's content, or so she thinks.
I am not going to lie. I did not care for Laura at all when she swanned in. She demands that Abby sleep with her young son so she gets a bedroom and seems reluctant to even talk to her. If you don't get her side of things via her chapter POV you wouldn't even know how much pain she is in at times. What I loved the most about Laura is she owns the mistakes she made and what she has done. There is no trying to make excuses or anything else. But she's not a saint, she gets frustrated with Abby and seems quite perplexed by children as a whole.
Abby has some issues with being abandoned by her mother and dealing with a boyfriend who died while she was pregnant with their child. It's not said out right, but the boyfriend's parents just left her to her own devices and wanted to pretend their precious son had nothing to do with her. Abby is reluctant to move forward at times and it's great that Laura is there to push her along the way. When Laura is genuinely happy she is now able to read her daughter at times, it will make you smile.
There's a hint of a romance for Laura in this one which I am curious if it will be discussed in the next book (if there is one). And though Abby has a crush on someone, it's not the most important thing in the world. For both women, the business the run, and Abby's son is important.
I loved we got to see updated on previous characters and there's a shocking reveal about someone close to one of our characters too. We do get a wedding (no spoilers) that made me happy to see as well.
Hartley-by-the-Sea has grown on me through three books and I can't wait to see what Hewitt has up her sleeves next.
Going to count this towards The Mostly Dead Writers Society 52 week challenge: Romance.