|Little, Brown Company|
When twelve year old Nicky and her father find a baby in the woods, Nicky has no idea how much it will change her relationship with her father and possibly help heal the wounds they have. Nicky would love to keep the baby, but knows that is not possible. "Baby Doris" as she is named by the hospital is found in a bloody towel in the snow, left to die by her parents. Nicky and her father take the baby to the hospital, answer a few police questions, and expect that to end the story. When Charlotte shows up and confesses to be the baby's mother, Nicky's dad wants to turn her in, but Nicky prevents this, as least as long as the snow storm is happening. Through the next few days, they learn Charlotte's story and they learn to heal from the tragedies from their past.
This turned out to be a sweet, fairly simple story about how families move on or don't move on after the worst situation happens. Nicky and her father have left their former home, job, and friends, but they can't let go of their grief in their home out in the middle of nowhere. They only learn how to be a family again from Charlotte and the fact that she has seemingly abandoned her baby. However the truth of both situations change when they all finally confront their pasts and have hope for the future. This is sort of a coming of age story, but mainly it is about how families change and grow and how we can live after the worst situation. I liked Shreve's straightforward writing style and I wouldn't mind reading more by her. 4 cups of cocoa!