Once a Lawman
Harlequin American, Feb 2009, $4.99
In Lakewood, Michigan police Lieutenant Chad Michalski gave a traffic ticket to Tessa Howard for speeding. At traffic court she denies she drove over the limit though Judge Howard recognizes her from previous speeding appearances. Tessa applies a nana-ism taught to her by her grandma as she tries to lie her way out of the ticket, but to her surprise Chad is there to testify otherwise. If found guilty she will lose her license, subsequently her job and her ability to assist her five siblings especially picking up her high school age brother before he vanishes into trouble for the night; the latter being her reason for speeding. Chad suggests to the judge that Tessa enroll in the Lakewood Police Department's Citizens' Police Academy instead of losing her driving privileges.
Chad and Tessa are attracted to one another, but he is a by the book officer while she is a stretch the law rule breaker. Still at the academy they begin to fall in love, but both have doubts that their relationship can survive their differences. Her family thinks otherwise, believing the pair is good for one another as he brings order and she brings chaos to their mix.
Although the sibling relationships seem over the top of Mt. Huron, ONCE A LAWMAN is terrific contemporary romance filled with humor and a vibrancy reminiscent of the Murray (John that is)-Tilley movie Moving Violations; I expected Joan Pudillo to show up for a grease job. The story line is fast-paced from the opening court appearance and never slows down as Tessa and Chad speed to love in Lisa Childs’ fun tale.