The To-Do List
Sharon Struth, author
Relax, she’s got this… Maggie Harris has her ultra-organized life well in hand, until she finds her neighbor and husband together, in her bed, and the tight hold she keeps on her world unravels, leaving her grasping for an escape. So how can she refuse when she’s handed the dream job of running her aunt’s bookstore and a chance for a fresh start? Even though the bookstore is in Brockport, Connecticut, her former hometown, and a place she’d vowed to leave behind forever. When someone breaks into Maggie’s new business and leaves a threat on the wall, Detective Cooper Stanton is assigned the case. It’s been twenty years, but Coop hasn’t forgotten the way Maggie once charmed him at every turn—even with her controlling ways. This time, though, Coop refuses to let her seize the reins. What he doesn’t know is she plans to grab them anyway…and she’s got a secret she never shared.
Struth’s sweet contemporary struggles a bit under the weight of its complex story. Free after a contentious divorce, Maggie Harris leaps at the chance to restart her life with her teenage daughter back in her hometown of Brockport, Conn., where she inherited her aunt’s bookstore. But she didn’t count on bumping into her high school crush, Cooper Stanton, so soon after settling in. No one warned her that the former college baseball star was now a town detective—and he’s in charge of finding whomever vandalized her bookstore. Despite old chemistry reigniting between Maggie and Cooper, it’s a long and slow road to a relationship. Each is keeping 20-year-old secrets that could very easily drive the other away. Struth’s characters are well developed and are given room to consult with family and friends about their problems, which is refreshing when many contemporaries keep the dialogue between the focus couple. But two big revelations make the story feels more complicated than it needs to be and take away from the pleasure of watching Maggie and Cooper fall back in love. (BookLife)
This review has been corrected; an early version had a typo in the author's first name.