by Joan Medlicott

April 2007
ISBN: 1-4165-2456-8
Reviewer Graphic Button Pocket Books
Trade Paperback

Amelia Declose and her husband, Thomas, used to travel extensively. They lived in Paris and entertained for a glittering crowd. Now Thomas and their daughter are both gone. Amelia suffers from depression, but her best friends, Grace and Hannah, help her get through.

Then a woman, Miriam, and her young daughter, Sadie, shows up on Ameliaís doorstep, claiming to be Thomasís daughter and granddaughter. Amelia wants to deny their existence, but little Sadie is the spitting image of Ameliaís own daughter, so she reluctantly reaches out.

Miriam is fleeing from an abusive husband, and her stay could be wrought with danger. Will Amelia lose this family before she learns to completely love them? Or will she have her deepest longings fulfilled?

An Unexpected Family is the first book Iíve read by bestselling author Joan Medlicott, and it is part of the Covington series. I havenít read the other books in the series, I think this is book eight of the series, since that is how many is listed in the front of this book. But Iím not certain. At any rate, this novel stands alone, although I am a bit confused how Amelia, Grace, and Hannah came to be living together when one of them is married with her husband living across the street, but that might have been explained in a previous book.

The story is character driven, with communication moving the story forward more than anything, but there is a little description in the novel, and I do get to know them somewhat through the course of the book. Iím not sure that Ameliaís reaction was true to form or not, as it seemed to me that she went through the stages of grief extremely quickly. But all in all, this is a sweet story full of caring women, love and acceptance. Questions are included at the rear of the book, as well as samples of some of Ms. Medlicottís previous books.

Reviewed in September 2007 by Laura.

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