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Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
Katherine Vaughn is a novelist who needs an escape, so she leaves California and travels back to Arkansas to stay with her Aunt Ruby, after the death of her husband. She is happy to see her Aunt and excited to be back in the house again. She learns that Ben lives in the mobile home on her aunt's farm, and has been a huge help to her aunt since the death of his wife. As she settles into her new place, she has a feeling there is more than meets the eye when it comes to Ben. Her aunt assures her that Ben hasn't been right since the death of his wife, so it would probably be best not to hope for any kind of relationship there. Still, the more time she gets to spend around Ben, she eagerly wants to put her arms around him and comfort him through all his trials. Ben Hatfield is a former Navy Seal who has been helping Aunt Ruby with her farm and cattle since the passing of his wife. Ten years ago, Katherine's cousin, Jill, had died in a car accident. It is something that he hasn't really gotten over. He enjoys his seclusion, but loneliness still has a way of creeping into the home, making him wish he had someone. He visits his grandfather every Saturday in the nursing home. When Katherine returns home, something begins eating at him, making him want to feel alive again. After learning that Katherine has trouble following her, and she is not safe, Ben pulls out all the stops to keep the woman he now has strong feelings for from being harmed.
Kinfolk is a poignant story that almost weighs upon the heart. This reader wanted to reach out and grab hold of Ben, and Katy, and give them a huge hug then invite them in for a cup of tea. These characters are extremely endearing. The way Ben reacts, after seeing his grandfather in the nursing home, touches upon the reader, allowing them to share in what he is experiencing in his heart. His personality indeed comes loudly in this story and one can't help but feel good about his actions, and want to have their own personal Ben. Ms. Sontheimer Murphy fashions a wonderfully told story, while inviting the audience into the lives of Katy and Ben. She gives great visualization and dialogue that makes this story top-notch. There were times this reader felt almost in the middle of all the events that took place. She pens the story, giving the characters great depth. This is a heartwarming book, with a touch of suspense and romance that is absolutely engaging.
Reviewed by: Linda L.