Meant to Be Mine: A Porter Family Novel #2 by Becky Wade
Ty Porter and Celia Park knew each other from high school. Celia had a crush on Ty in those days but never let anyone know it. They didn’t bump into each other again under after her college graduation. Then after a four day whirlwind courtship in Las Vegas, they got married on a whim in a painted pink wedding chapel. The next morning two things happened: Celia woke up believing she had found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, while Ty woke up with regrets. He told her he had made a mistake; he was in love with another woman he’d been dating for two years. Celia vowed never to forgive Ty and returned to Oregon heartbroken. Ty returned to Texas. But there was no divorce.
Five years later Ty was now a three-time champion bull rider, and having invested his winnings wisely, was making a good living. One day on impulse, he decided to look up Celia Park and visit. He wanted to apologize to her, so he looked her up online and called her. A couple days later he was shocked, dismayed and yet delighted to find out that he had a beautiful daughter, Addie.
An emotional tug-of-war ensued between the two parents. They were still married, but Celia did not want him involved in her life. Nothing was settled between them by the time Ty had to return to the next round of competitions. Weeks later, a bull threw him and then smashed his kneecap, and Ty knew this was the end of his career. While recovering in Holley, Texas, he managed to convince Celia to move to his home town so he could begin to be part of Addie’s life as her daddy. Celia agreed as long as she and Addie could live in their own home and Celia could find work. The emotional tug-of-war continued. Celia kept Ty at arm’s length to block any kind of reconciliation between them.
This is a beautifully written, gut-wrenching story that keeps the reader guessing until the very end whether there would be a reconciliation or not. Becky Wade writes a powerful character-driven book filled with the types of conflicts most readers can relate with. Celia doesn’t trust Ty after he ripped her heart out in Las Vegas. Ty is torn between his attraction for Celia and Tawny, the woman he has wanted to marry for the past seven years. In spite of their separation, Ty has never cheated on Celia. Now, while he is learning how to be a father, Ty begins to turn to God for guidance.
Amidst the powerfully emotional scenes the author has generated so skillfully are gems of humor. Celia’s Uncle Danny makes a wonderful supporting character, adding laughs at his quirky dating behavior–great comic relief between emotionally tense moments. Ty himself has a good sense of humor in spite of bouts of arrogance and ego. When Celia and Ty are not wrapped up in aggravating conflict, they have their funny moments.
Ty: “You’re bossy, Sweet One.”
Celia: “You’re maddening, Showboat.”
And the relationship between Celia and Addie is endearing. Addie can be pretty funny herself with her love of all things related to princesses.
Another factor that adds to the charm of this story for me is the author’s use of metaphors. The one I liked most was the key chain charm that Ty gave to Celia when he visited her in Oregon. It read, “Give Peace a Chance.” Twice, at the very beginning, she threw the charm into the garbage. And mysteriously, the charm re-appeared on her key chain, leaving Celia to wonder how Ty had managed it. The third time she threw the charm out, it didn’t re-appear, reflecting the feelings of foreboding and suspense I experienced when their relationship broke down.
This is one of those special books that I will be reading over and over. The author is successful in creating a story that makes it easy to become involved and invested in the characters and the outcome of their lives.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Bethany House Publisher’s review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”