There’s nothing in the world Army Sergeant Vic Carponti loves more than his wife and his country. Smart-mouthed and easy tempered, he takes everything as a joke . . . except his promise to come home to his wife, Nicole, for Christmas. As he prepares to leave for his latest deployment into Iraq, Vic will do everything he can to shield his beautiful, supportive wife from the realities of war . . . and from his own darkest fears.
As a career army wife, Nicole Carponti knows just what to expect from her husband’s tour of duty: loneliness, relentless worry, and a seemingly endless countdown until the moment Vic walks through the door again. But when the unthinkable happens, Nicole and Vic’s bond is tested like never before and changes everything they believe to be true about the power of love and the simple beauty of being home for the holidays.
One of the things I love so much about the Coming Home series from Jessica Scott are the characters themselves. They are unflinchingly real, raw and flawed people – ordinary folk dealing with extraordinary circumstances in the only way they know how to.
My favourite of all so far has been Vic Carponti. He is the most brilliantly inappropriate character – we’ve all got one of these in our lives, that friend who says things that no one else would ever contemplate letting out of their mouth. When Jessica revealed she was writing his story, I was so excited.
What I’ll Be Home for Christmas shows is that side of Carponti that not many see – a man who has such deep and abiding love for his wife, a soldier who will do anything to ensure the morale of his team is high, a caring and compassionate person. The connection between Carponti and Nicole is profound – their love and friendship is strong and their physical chemistry is off-the-charts hot. There is just something about them that makes you believe that everything will work out the right way for them.
If you have read earlier stories from this series, you will know what happens to Carponti. If you haven’t, read them now (and read them in order). Seeing another view of the events and what happened on this side of the story certainly added a level of richness for me. The life of a soldier or military spouse is one I do not know, and I thank Jessica Scott for showing us what it is like for those away and at home.
We get more glimpses into the story of Trent and Laura, and I cannot wait for it. Actually I am looking to all the ones under way – I’m sure Jessica Scott is probably tired of me asking when Reza and Emily’s story is going to be done.
I’ll Be Home for Christmas was so worth waiting for!
My rating: 4.5 out of 5
Release Date: 5 November 2013
Note: I was provided with an advanced reader copy of this book by Forever Yours, an imprint of Grand Central Publishing via NetGalley in return for an honest review.