Dori Ann Dupré, author
Jonathan "Buddy" Cordova is a small-time criminal defense lawyer living paycheck to paycheck and practicing law out of his house in Fayetteville. Viewing himself as a modern-day Atticus Finch, he represents the poor, the indigent, the "probably guilty"—the kinds of clients who usually end up in jail. He's shy, painfully awkward around pretty women, and carrying a dark secret, but can't help falling for Julie Saint, a kindergarten teacher and army widow with a small daughter. Consumed with love for his ready-made family, Buddy relishes his new role of husband and stepfather. Bonded over their mutual childhood losses, he and his stepdaughter become the best of friends. But when tragedy strikes, and the past returns for its reckoning, Buddy must find the strength to do what's right for his new family, even if it breaks his heart.