Melissa Jagears is back and inviting readers to return to Teaville in third novel-length offering of the Teaville Moral Society Series
Now, the good news is, that if you're like me and somehow missed book 2 and the novellas for this series, A Chance at Forever has a strong and solid plot all on its own and is easily followed for those unfamiliar with the characters history.
A Chance at Forever centers upon the lives of Mercy McClain and Aaron Firebrook. two solid characters who easily carry the story.
I found myself surprised, however, when it was Aaron's story that drew me in over that of Mercy. While I expected some of the story's general direction having already been familiar with Teaville and its featured red-light district, I appreciate how Jagears laid out the long term effects of abuse on male figures through Owen, Jimmy, and of course Aaron. I was impressed with the nuances she brought to each character's arc and the way she highlighted some of the very different reactions people can have to trauma early in life.
At the heart of this book though are the themes of redemption and mercy. Jagears has the ability to lock onto her themes and weave them into each story she coaxes out of her novels. The most obvious example of this is the relationship between Mercy and Aaron, although Jagears skillfully weaves it into the stories of Jimmy, Caroline, and Sadie as well.
While that sounds like a lot to follow Jagears also knows how to balance her characters, the story never felt draggy or over-complex with too many ideas. Instead, Teaville feels like the lively little town it is. Jagears has the wisdom to take those extra characters and pour them into novellas for readers who like the extra history and background.
In the end, Jagears has once again given readers a satisfying page turner from Teaville. Now, I'm off to find Book 2 :)
4.5 stars out of 5
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."