Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Enduring Justice

I think with cutting off Mia's hair, we also cut off some of her sweetness. Not that she isn't still an adorable little girl, but all of a sudden she's showing us a sassy and funny side. Last night Jesse said he had to go to the bathroom, and as he headed there, Mia beat him to the door and blocked it saying, "Who needs a bathroom when you have a big backyard and a shovel?" I couldn't stop laughing; Jesse didn't think it was quite so funny when she stood her ground teasing him. Later on, she was calling me Mamacita. I have no idea what is up with that! We are a family that tends to swap zingers and laugh a lot, but for the most part, we've protected Mia. She can't always tell gentle teasing from cruelty, but lately she's been dishing it out in some pretty big doses.

It's fun to see just how she fits into the family. She really is the one who ties us all together. Before she was born, and even in her first couple of years, that person was me. I'm married to Jesse, and the mom to all three kids, and that put me at the heart of the family. Sometime around when she turned almost three, about the time she started saying "Nice kitty" and "Tastes like chicken" she slipped into the role as the heart of this family. The rest of us all get mad at each other, as families do, but Mia reminds us why we love each other. She's comfortable snuggling with each of us. The other night I watched her lounge on top of Jesse. He was lying on his stomach on the bed watching TV. She climbed up and rested her head on his back, and it was such a natural action, as though he belonged to her and was there to make her comfortable. That's how she is with all of us; we are her home, and she is ours.

Enduring Justice by Amy Wallace is the third book in the Defenders of Hope series about agents in the FBI. It picks up shortly after Healing Promises; Michael Parker is working a missing child case that may have connections to a white supremacist militia group. Hanna Kessler, his girlfriend, has been battling demons for over twenty years since she was molested as a child. Michael's case and the events of the previous book make her emotions boil over separating her emotionally from the people she needs to lean on most in the mistaken belief that it's all her fault. Wallace does a wonderful job of ratcheting up the tension and describing the difficult job faced by federal agents in tracking down pedophiles. Hanna's shattered heart influences every part of her life, even her friendships and make it hard for her to trust other people or herself; Wallace depicts that aspect of an abuse survivor with compassion and honesty. I felt that there were too many plotlines in the book between the militia, missing child, Hanna's abuse, and all of the various agents' personal lives. It was hard to keep track of who was doing or felt what. It also drew some of the power away from the militia story, because it was told in a very detached, rapid-fire manner. I didn't enjoy this book as much as I had the previous two in this series. Wallace may have added too many characters to handle them all. I do hope that she continues the series with Lee and Rashida and that she pares down the non-essentials.

I'm giving away two copies of Andy Andrew's The Noticer this week. To win, drop me an email with a few lines about someone who had a major impact on your life. The best two entries will be posted on my blog on Friday, and they will each receive a copy of the hardcover book! Entries must be in before 10pm Thursday, April 30th. Good luck!


kwesifriends said...

Hello Christy.

Pls. claim your award..