I received this book for free from Netgalley in order to prepare an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Somebody's Baby (Darling, VT #3) by Donna Alward
Series: Darling VT #3
Published by St. Martin's Paperbacks on April 4th 2017
“What if you were blindsided by something good? Wouldn’t it be a shame to miss out on it because it wasn’t in your plans?”
FINAL DECISION: The story of two people who have been burned by love before and are afraid to trust themselves or one another with the possibility of love. Genuine nice characters in a small town setting makes this contemporary a real heart warmer.
THE STORY: Oaklee Collier is known around Darling as the “Social Butterfly” not so much for her personal life as her job running the town’s social media. She is sunny, upbeat and put together — or at least she presents that front to the world. Actually, she has a disaster of an apartment, is sick of going to bridal and baby showers, and still hasn’t gotten over being left at the altar by her high school sweetheart. One night, she ends up hitting a dog in the road. She takes him to see Rory Gallagher, veterinarian. Rory is a serial dater who gets through the first or second date but hasn’t had a real relationship since school when his heart was broken two times over. A classic friends to lovers story.
OPINION: The final Gallagher brother is certainly not ready to settle down — especially because he was devastated by the woman he loved while in school. Now the junior veterinarian spends his time caring for baby kittens and dating a different woman every night. One night Oaklee comes to him with an injured dog. The two grew up together as Rory had been best friends with Oaklee’s older brother. But just as Rory began noticing the Oaklee when they were teenagers, her brother slapped him down and instead demanded that Rory care for Oaklee as if she were his own sister. No matter how much he tries, however, Rory cannot think of Oaklee in a sisterly fashion.
Oaklee has never forgotten her teenage crush. She went on to love another man but he broke her heart as well. Now Oaklee is covering her sadness with a happy face and filling her life with her work. When she accidentally hits a dog on the way home, she becomes enmeshed in unwanted connections — both with the dog and Rory. A reluctant foster parent to the injured dog, Oaklee ends up looking outside herself and opening herself up to caring and loving in a way she hasn’t done since she was stood up on her wedding day.
As Rory and Oaklee struggle with their attraction to one another and their fears of being hurt again, they also find themselves being friends in a way they weren’t as children. Their romance has fits and starts which feels real and difficult.
I loved that these two have small struggles in making a relationship work. These are real people with emotional fears, work problems, and financial constraints. I loved how the injured dog opens Oaklee up. The dog made me smile and cry. Pet lovers will certainly feel a connection with how Oaklee falls in love with the dog even as he challenges and annoys her.
I have enjoyed all three books in this series (about the Gallagher brothers) and I hope we see more from Darling, VT in the future. (There are still the Gallagher sisters!!).
WORTH MENTIONING: The timeline of this book overlaps with the second book in the series SOMEONE TO LOVE.
CONNECTED BOOKS: SOMEBODY’S BABY is the third book in the Darling, VT series. Although there are overlapping characters, this book can be read as a standalone.
STAR RATING: I give this book 4 stars.
NOTE: I received an ARC of this book via Netgalley in order to provide a review. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions contained herein are my own.