From the beloved and bestselling author of the Ransom Canyon and Harmony, Texas series comes a powerful, heartwarming story about generations of family and the ironclad bonds they forge. MORNINGS ON MAIN is now available! Grab your copy today!
When Jillian James lands in the small town Texas community of Laurel Springs, she’s definitely not planning to stay—except to find a few clues about the father who abandoned her and destroyed her faith in family.
Connor Larady is a single dad, and the only one caring for his grandmother, Eugenia, who has Alzheimer’s. And now he has to close Eugenia’s quilt shop. When Connor meets down-on-her-luck Jillian, he’s out of options. Can he trust the newcomer to do right by his grandmother’s legacy?
Jillian is done with relationships. But as she grows closer to Connor and Eugenia, she must consider giving up her nomadic life for a future with those who need her.
An inspiring family saga that asks us to consider what love and chosen family really mean.
Grab you copy of MORNINGS ON MAIN here!
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He held the truck door for her, then circled around and climbed in. “Where to?”
“Somewhere quiet. I’ve been surrounded by people all day.”
“I agree. The house has been full of friends since I got Gram home. I managed to run most of them off early last night so she could sleep and again this afternoon to let Gram rest a few hours before the quilters swarmed in.”
He drove through the Hamburger Hut, picked up malts and burgers, then crossed the bridge to the old part of town. The boards over the water were uneven, rattling her from side to side like a cheap, twirling carnival ride.
Jillian raised her eyebrows but didn’t say a word. Where they were going didn’t matter. She was with the one she wanted to be with. She needed to stop worrying about lingering memories and just relax.
He parked by a three-story building and climbed out.
She waited, not sure what to do. The malts and burgers were still on the seat beside her. Surely they weren’t stopping here. This place was scary even in daylight. She didn’t plan on staying around to see how it looked in less than an hour.
When he opened her door, he raised his arms to catch her. “Come with me.” He encouraged as if offering far more than a lift down from the high seat.
Her legs were plenty long enough to take the step out, but she slid into his embrace. He lowered her to the ground. For moment they were so close they touched as they breathed. She thought he might lean in slightly and kiss her, but he simply brushed his cheek against her hair. “Trust me, Jillian, you’re going to like this restaurant.”
He grabbed his raincoat from behind the seat, handed her the drinks and picked up their meal.
Following him into the building, she was surprised to see how sound the old factory seemed to be. The ceiling was tall, over twenty feet. Decaying ropes still hung from pulleys, and worktables stood dusty, silently waiting for craftsmen to arrive. The windows were high, ribboning the building with natural light.
Staying close, she whispered as though she might disturb ghosts, “What did they used to make in here?”
“I’m not sure. I think parts of oil rigs were shipped in and assembled here. I don’t know much about it, but there’s an old Christmas tree over there in the corner.” He pointed to a six-foot structure that was formed from a mixture of valves, spools and fittings welded together.
“They’re used at oil or gas well sites. I see them in the oil fields around. I’m not really sure why they call them Christmas trees. A roughneck would have to be drunk to mistake this jumble of metal for a tree.”
She turned in a complete circle. “Nice restaurant.”
“Oh, we’re not there yet.” He pointed to a staircase along one wall. “We’ve got rooftop seating.”
Suddenly excited, she climbed ahead of him, her shoes tapping a rhythm in double time. At the top, she waited impatiently with a malt in each hand.
He juggled the bag of burgers as he shoved the heavy door open. They stepped onto the rooftop with no one else around. She could see for miles in every direction. The trees, the fields. Oil rigs, scattered homes and barns, schools and churches.
“It’s beautiful!” The sun’s low glow gave everything a golden light.
He set the bag down and spread his raincoat out like a tablecloth on an air vent cover. “It’s not yet, but it will be.” He pulled up two empty five-gallon buckets to use as stools.
She sat the malts down. “You’ve been to this restaurant before.”
“Guilty. But I’ve never brought anyone here. Only you.”
While he unwrapped his burger, she looked around, pointing out everything as if he was also seeing it for the first time. “Look how winding the creek is.”
“I had no idea there were so many trees.”
“Oh, look at those horses running.” She loved the way the evening clouds moved over the land, darkening the hues of the earth in shadow as they drifted.
“It’s winter now, not near as pretty as it’ll be come spring.” He set his hamburger beside hers and came to join her near the roof’s edge. “I lease that flat land out to a farmer who plants cotton every spring. That brown dirt will look like a green carpet in a few months.”
“I won’t be here in spring.” She let the wind catch her words as she turned away from him and the view. The black tar roof beneath her feet was all she saw now, but she stared hard, willing not one tear to fall.
This time. This place she would miss. When she left, Jillian knew memories would be packed in her heart. A year from now, a decade, a lifetime, she’d still remember the beauty of this view in winter and wonder how it looked in spring.
“Compelling and beautifully written.” —Debbie Macomber, #1 New York Times bestselling author on Ransom Canyon
About Jodi Thomas:
New York Times and USA Today’s bestselling author Jodi Thomas has published over 30 books in both the historical romance and contemporary genres, the majority of which are set in her home state of Texas. Publishers Weekly calls her novels “Distinctive…Memorable,” and that in her stories “[tension] rides high, mixed with humor and kisses more passionate than most full-on love scenes.” In 2006, Romance Writers of America (RITA) inducted Thomas into the RWA Hall of Fame for winning her third RITA for THE TEXAN’S REWARD. She also received the National Readers’ Choice Award in 2009 for TWISTED CREEK (2008) and TALL, DARK, AND TEXAN (2008). While continuing to work as a novelist, Thomas also functions as Writer in Residence at the West Texas A&M University campus, where she inspires students and alumni in their own writing pursuits.