In "The Patient Gift" by Patty Howell, Lea Novak has allowed grief to
numb her heart. Durham North's fortuitous need for a tow truck sends
him knocking on Lea's door and a Christmas miracle is about to occur.
"The Patient Gift" is a powerful testament to love overcoming all
obstacles, including the dark despair grief can cause. Patty Howell
has created a true hero in Durham North as his sensitivity and
patience are exactly what Lea needs. And who doesn't need a dog like
Basil? Patty Howell is guaranteed to garner some new fans with this
enchanting holiday tale.
Durham looked her phone number up the next day and called. She sounded
more aloof on the telephone than when he was with her. Since the first
snowy night, when she'd opened the door, he'd been drawn to her.
Embarrassed by his fascination with her, he'd intentionally not called
the first week. Let the days slip by, even though he'd wanted to. Oh,
did he ever. He wondered what had made her so sad. He could have run a
search on her name. But that wasn't his way. Now.
It had been at one time, with his parents. He'd worked closely with
U.S. intelligence and military types after the debacle in Africa. Did
a little reconnaissance on his own. Sometimes what the U.S. couldn't
do legally, others could. And doing things outside the country wasn't
all that difficult. A few connections, palms greased and he got
answers. Then he took action. Those who'd harmed his parents would
never harm anyone else. And although he was a sensitive, deeply caring
man, he had no remorse.
However, that was the past.
It wasn't difficult to discern something traumatic had happened to
Lea, nevertheless he'd learned to be a patient man. A few women had
turned his head before, none who'd pulled at his heartstrings as she
had. He wanted to know her—spiritually, emotionally, and yes,
physically. He wanted to break through the pain that had enshrouded
such a beautiful creature.
Recalling last night at the restaurant, telling her the story about
the hummingbirds, he'd intentionally not told her about the female. As
the birds had continued their nest building, the female took a
precarious turn and one of her feathers stuck to a portion of the
spider web. Webs are extremely viscous and if not for the temerity and
persistence of her mate, she wouldn't have gotten loose.
Lea reminded Durham of that snared female. Something had happened to
turn what he believed to be a normally vibrant person into the
withdrawn hermit she'd become. He prayed she'd allow him to help lift
her out of the abyss.
He called again the next day, and the next. No softening of her
shell-like exterior was apparent. But he wasn't losing hope. He was