The Edge of Heaven, by Teresa Hill

>> Friday, March 14, 2003

Another book read in February was Teresa Hill's The Edge of Heaven. I'd already read and enjoyed one of her category books, written as Sally Tyler Hayes: Her Secret Guardian. Unfortunately, my reaction to this one was completely different.

He waited for this moment for most of his life, but now that he apparently found his older brother Sam in Baxter, Ohio, Rye McRae hesitates, not sure of the reception he will receive. As he watches the house with a hope of finding family love inside, Emma McRae returns home from college. Her boyfriend Mark abused her so Emma fled to the sanctuary of her adopted parents' home. However, Sam and Rachel leave town to help a pregnant relative before Emma can explain her plight.

Rye finally finds the courage to knock, but an answering Emma thinks he is seeking a job with Sam. He fails to tell her his identity claiming only to be a friend of her adopted father. As Mark begins to stalk Emma, Rye intercedes to keep her safe and that leads to Rye getting into trouble with the law. Still Rye will risk jail to keep Emma safe, not just because she is family, but because he loves her with all his heart.

This was a difficult book, basically because of the age difference between the protagonists, which is a major issue here. At 25, I'm not that much older than Emma (telling precisely how old she is would be a spoiler), and I don't think I'd be too averse to having a relationship with a guy Rye's age, so it's not that I didn't like this book just because of the age difference.

Anyway, I did like the first part of the book, but things went swiftly downhill when their relationship came out and the looooong separation started. I usually don't like long separations, but I've been known to tolerate them. Not here. I didn't feel it was necessary for them to grow up, and I disliked the motivations for it. IMO, Rye didn't back off because he really though Emma was too young for him, but because Sam disapproved. So he was, in effect, proving that his relationship with his brother was more important to him than Emma. Very romantic.

My grade for this: C+, and it isn't a D because I liked the first part of the book.

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