Title: Saving Hannah
Author: J.P. Barnaby
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 18, 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, Suspense
Page Count: 200 pages
Reviewed by: CrabbyPatty
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Thomas Aberthol’s luck has run out. His daughter, Hannah, needs a miracle he can’t deliver. A hacker with a felony record, Thomas has little chance of finding work that will provide the care she needs. Out of money, out of options, and out of hope, he throws himself on the mercy of someone he never thought to see again.
Even after ten years, Aleksander Sanna still dreams of that drunken kiss. A perfect moment in time when Thomas wanted him. In his world of elegant code and high finance, the picture he holds of Thomas torments him in the dark of night.
Their worlds collide as Thomas interviews for the job he so desperately needs with the company Aleks inherited from his father. Thomas doesn’t get the position, but Aleks offers him a completely different kind of proposal, one suited to Thomas’s unique talents… one that will change the course of both their lives
Aleksander Sanna and Thomas Aberthol were college roommates and after a drunken kiss a few weeks prior to graduation, they haven’t seen one another in years. Currently Aleks is president of his murdered father’s company and Thomas is a felon with no job prospects and a daughter who has leukemia. When Aleks reads about Hannah’s medical situation in the newspaper, he offers Thomas financial security and medical care for Hannah. All Thomas has to do is marry Aleks and use his hacking skills to find out what happened to Aleks’ father.
JP Barnaby does a stellar job here showing us Thomas’ desperation. It’s gut-wrenching and you feel his love for his beloved child and how he would do anything for her.
Seven years of pain and stress stripped his life down to survival and supporting Hannah – nothing else mattered. Hannah’s diagnosis, watching his mother work while he couldn’t, the enormous insurance premiums – the past few years had sucked them dry. Losing his mother’s home, the home he’d grown up in, the home where Hannah felt safe, the home his mother had worked all her life for, cracked the foundation of his hope.
I love the modern fairy-tale aspect of this story that gives Hannah a new home and access to medical advances, while saving the family home for Steve’s mother and easing Thomas’ burden. And the marriage of convenience gives Thomas and Aleks a second chance at exploring the attraction they never really acted upon in college. Their relationship is a bit of a slow burn and it’s worth the wait for the steam and sizzle.
But what didn’t work for me as well is the nefarious criminal subplot and its aftermath. IMHO it takes focus away from a plot that stands well enough on its own without all the shadowy mysterious danger and intrigue. But other readers maybe disagree and enjoy how this plot carries the characters away from a safe and expected ending. Let me know what you think! 3.5 stars for “Saving Hannah.”