Review: When the Vow Breaks by Judith Leigh

Review by Judy Nickles

In sickness and in health…a vow made in the flush of youth and strength, perhaps the most difficult one to keep. Judith Leigh has written a poignant journey for both her hero and heroine.

The last two weeks had been difficult, but Jillian was getting stronger and all her tests had come back clear. Life was looking up. Morgan wore a broad smile as he sauntered toward the nurse’s station. When he didn’t see anyone, he strode in the direction of the nurse’s lounge.

He started to stick his head in the doorway, but stopped when he heard the nurses talking.

“It’s so hard to keep a smile on my face as if nothing were wrong. She’s so beautiful.”

“Yes, and to think how I envied her fine blonde hair and fair skin,” a second voice added.

“But I sure don’t envy her now,” another offered. The first woman spoke again. “It’s so unfair. If only the outcome could be different.” She let out a loud sigh. “Yes, she’s going to die and there’s nothing anyone can do to save her.” He recognized Nurse Thompson’s voice. “So sad.”

Morgan grabbed his chest as he backed away from the room. His heart raced. Sweat beaded his forehead and his collar tightened against his throat. No, it couldn’t be. His beautiful Jilly wasn’t going to die. Hearing the words he’d been dreading spoken out loud tore at his heart. He couldn’t breathe. He had to get away. God help him. He couldn’t stay and watch her die.

While some of the events of When the Vow Breaks might seem a bit coincidentally contrived, the true romance reader will cheer the characters as they determinedly survive their personal struggles in the midst of World War II’s aftermath. Walking through a diagnosis of breast cancer and marital strife, military wife Jillian Chandler confronts her feelings of physical violation and rejection and the need to forgive. Captain Morgan Chandler must finally deal with his past hurts and risk his present happiness to honor his commitment to his country and save a friend.

A taste of history, in events surrounding the Berlin Airlift, and a hint of ‘a thriller’ combine to make When the Vow Breaks not your ‘ordinary’ romance. Two additional love stories on the periphery of Jillian’s and Morgan’s trials are a definite bonus. The well-written story flows smoothly from beginning to end. It’s one of those old-fashioned, happily-ever-after stories we don’t see much anymore but would like to. Finally, the epilogue satisfactorily ties up most of the loose ends and focuses on the hope that every romance reader holds dear.

Judith Leigh definitely writes for those who believe in the tender endurance of true love.