When the popular girl whose friends bullied him in high school suddenly reenters his life, little son in tow, Turner Caldwell must put the past behind him if they are to survive.
Turner Caldwell works at a local motel as a handyman while attending college full-time. On his way to class one day, he is shocked to see Cassandra Todd and her young son in town. The sight of her brings back powerful memories of being bullied in high school—she was the popular head cheerleader and he the target of her friends’ mean-spirited pranks.
The Return of Cassandra Todd is Darrel Nelson's second novel and WOW is it an awesome piece of work. His first book, The Anniversary Waltz, really grabbed me and I fell in love with it. In this new book, Cassandra Todd has returned to her hometown with a small boy in tow. Turner Caldwell, a former classmate of Cassandra's and the brunt of the bullying in their high school, sees Cassandra going into the bank and is shocked. He loved her in high school but could never tell her. That night Turner comes back to the motel where he lives and works to find a job for him. He goes to the room and finds Cassandra and her son there. Cassandra and Turner do not talk much, just idle chit chat. The next day things become very complicated, Cassandra's husband, Brad, former high school football star, is looking for her and her son because Cassandra left to get out of their abusive relationship.Cassandra looks to Turner for help and he cannot refuse her.
WOW!!! I loved this book. As I stated I fell in love with The Anniversary Waltz from almost the beginning and with this book it is the same thing. I found myself unable to put the book down from all the excitement, suspense and intrigue going on in this novel. This book had me at the edge of my seat, not knowing how things would turn out. Darrel Nelson highlights two big issues in this book, bullying and spousal abuse. I am glad to see how Darrel Nelson showed the long lasting effects bullying has on people, hurt that stays with them forever even. He also did a great job with the topic of spousal abuse especially putting in his story about shelters, restraining orders and the reality of their effectiveness in many cases. He also show the bravery that Cassandra had, to go the steps she needed. I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend this and The Anniversary Waltz for your must read list. Cannot wait for Darrel Nelson's next novel!