Title: A Promise of Safekeeping by Lisa Dale
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Berkley Trade
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
A beautiful new tale of redemption from the author of Slow Dancing on Price’s Pier
Nine years ago, Lauren Matthews prosecuted the case of a lifetime. But her error in judgment sent an innocent man to prison for a long time. Now Arlen Fieldstone has finally been released, and Lauren has only one thing on her mind: asking forgiveness. How can she make up for nine years of his life?
To get to Arlen, Lauren must first get through Arlen’s best friend, Will Farris. Will hasn’t forgotten Lauren from those days, and he hasn’t forgiven her for destroying his best friend’s life. He is Arlen’s keeper, protecting him from suspicious neighbors as well as from Lauren.
In the steaming summer streets of Richmond, Virginia, three people’s lives collide. Lauren needs forgiveness. Arlen needs hope. And Will? He needs something too, something that no one can know-especially not Lauren…
Lisa Dale’s A Promise of Safekeeping is a thought provoking novel about forgiveness, friendship and love. The realization that she sent an innocent man to prison shakes Lauren Matthews’ confidence and takes her on a life altering journey.
A Promise of Safekeeping is a compelling character driven novel. Lauren Matthews is an ambitious woman with a highly successful career. She is close to her brother Jonah and her niece Dakota. Her relationship with her parents is loving yet complicated. Her compulsion to apologize to Arlen Fieldstone for his wrongful conviction leads Lauren to rethink her priorities and career goals. And her relationship with Arlen’s best friend Will Farris further complicates the decisions facing her.
Will Farris is a complex character with many different layers. Deeply loyal to Arlen, Will never doubted his innocence and provides him with a home after his release from prison. Their close childhood friendship binds these two men together and Will is extremely protective of Arlen. Underneath Will’s dislike of Lauren is a strong attraction that he finds impossible to resist. Thrown together as Lauren tries to apologize to Arlen, Will and Lauren grow closer as they discover one another’s secrets.
Arlen Fieldstone is a victim of injustice yet he is not as jaded and prison hardened as one might think. While he is resentful of Lauren and her role in his incarceration, there is a hopefulness to his character as he tries to integrate back into society. I like that he does not play the victim nor does he want charity. He wants to earn what he receives and make a difference in other people’s lives.
A Promise of Safekeeping is a moving novel of self-discovery, redemption and second chances. It is an emotional read with multi-faceted characters and a realistic storyline. Full of twists and turns and startling revelations, Lisa Dale keeps her readers on the edge of their seats until A Promise of Safekeeping reaches its exciting conclusion.