Contributor's Pick: Taking Charge

Chanpreet's Must-Read Choice: Taking Charge by Mandy Baggot

Robyn Matthers is on her way home to Portage, Michigan, from the UK when she finds out her father is seriously ill. She hasn't been home in 9 years and is anxious about going back when she runs into a handsome stranger in the middle of Chicago's O'Hare airport while waiting to catch the flight home. Cole Ryan is also running away from the mess of his personal life in Chicago to try and make a fresh start in Portage. They share a common passion: ice hockey, which is perfect for Robyn since not only is she headed home to see her ill father, but she's got to step in and manage his roadhouse and struggling ice hockey team until he is well enough to manage them on his own. What is it that caused Robyn to leave nine years ago and will she have to face it again? Will she be successful in managing the roadhouse and the Portage Panthers? And what caused Cole to leave Chicago and come to Portage?

I was completely blown away by this book. I was expecting something light and easy, not very deep, and instead got something very complicated and deep. I read an interview with Mandy Baggot a few weeks ago where she described her books as contemporary romance, but to label this book that is to do it an injustice. This book can easily fit into the romance, chick lit, or women's lit genres. I don't wish to give too much away, but Robyn left after a catastrophic event that severely influenced her. She acts like she's tough and can handle everything, when on the inside, she's still struggling to find her footing again. I really liked Robyn and her character. She could be "every girl," and the same with Cole. He was just as torn and hurt as Robyn by what had happened to him, and he could be an "every boy." It was really easy to relate to them and not only like them, but root for them. I flew through this book and loved every minute of it. Just when I thought I knew what was going to happen next, I was thrown for a loop.  

Mandy Baggot has written four other books, which are available as both eBooks and paperbacks. She lives in Wiltshire, UK with her husband, two daughters and cats. Mandy loves to sing and has tried out for The X Factor. She also loves police/action television shows. For more information about Mandy or her books please check out her website,