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Lost and Found by @LucindaRace is a Book Series Starter pick #laterinliferomance #romance #giveaway

Title: Lost and Found

Author: Lucinda Race

Genre: Romance, later in life, contemporary

Book Blurb:

Love never ends... A widow who talks to her late husband and her handsome single neighbor who has secretly loved her for years. In the years after Cari McKenna lost her husband, she threw her energy into raising her family and starting a thriving coffee shop. Now, her grown children have moved out and her daughters are pushing her to brave the perils of internet dating. Even Cari is forced to admit that her life might be a little too placid. Until a tree falls across her roof and exposes her loneliness. Ray Davis always stops by What's Perkin' for his morning muffin, it’s not just the blueberry muffins that pull him in but the beautiful widow, Cari McKenna. The handsome master carpenter is starting to wonder if she’ll ever see him as more than a neighbor and friend. Working with her to rebuild her damaged house gives him a good excuse to spend more time with her, but she still only seems interested in him as a buddy. Then Ray's ex-wife rolls into town intent of forcing him to reconnect but really to give her an alibi and that’s when Ray realizes his dreams- or even his life- could be lost.


Ray couldn’t take his eyes off Cari. Despite the current situation, her beauty struck him. Shining emerald-green eyes were fringed with long dark lashes. Auburn streaks highlighted her ebony hair, which framed her delicate features. She could stop a man in his tracks, he thought.

Ray wanted to help and as a contractor he didn’t want her to be taken advantage of either. “Cari, I can give you the names of a few good contractors. The insurance company will request several estimates. If you’d like, I can give you a quote for repairs; it will give you something to compare with the other estimates. I’m happy to explain any terms you’re not familiar with. Just give me a shout.”

Ray’s gentle tone seemed to soothe her raw emotions, as he noticed her expression start to relax.

“I guess I don’t have a lot of choices at the moment. I’ll have to be patient until everything is cleaned up. Thank you for being so understanding. You’ve been so nice about all this. I really do appreciate your help.”

“I’m going to head home, Mom. Try not to worry about everything tonight. Tomorrow is another day.” Shane hugged his mom tight. “Get some rest.”

“Cari, if you’re all set, I’m going to take off, too. Unless you need something, and then I’m happy to hang around for a while longer.” Ray wasn’t in a rush to leave, but he didn’t have a good excuse to stay.

“No, I’m all set. Thanks again, Ray, for everything. You were a big help tonight. I’ll see you tomorrow at the shop? Breakfast is on me. After all, it’s the least I can do.” Cari gave him a lopsided smile.

“You don’t need to buy me breakfast, but thanks. I’d never miss out on your cooking,” he teased. “Good night, Cari.” With a jaunty wave, he went home. As he walked through the door, he could see Cari. Her shoulders were slumped as she walked into her house.

She found herself inexplicably drawn to what was left of the sunroom. Standing on the threshold, she peered into the gloomy darkness from the long shadows cast by the tree. Scanning, she could see her piano on the other side of the room. Unsure of its condition, she picked a path over the debris and, to her delight, discovered the old baby grand and her treasured family photos sitting atop it were in pristine condition. The cushions on her overstuffed chair and ottoman were littered with pine needles, but otherwise untouched. Ben had given her the set when Ellie, her youngest daughter, was born. She was amazed at the total destruction on one side while the other remained untouched.

The ivory keys called to her, willing her fingers to lovingly caress them from rich low bass tones to sweet high notes. She studied the photos on display. Frozen moments of a full and happy life: a wedding photo with Ben and one with their newborn twins, Kate and Shane. They were the spitting image of each other: graceful, slender, and tall with thick ebony hair, flecked with auburn and golden highlights. Kate had her green eyes while Shane had his father’s blue ones. She reached out to study a picture of the twins tucked into a chair, proudly cradling Ellie the day she came home from the hospital. She could still hear Kate tell her that baby Eleanor looked like a pixie, with wispy blond hair and crystal-blue eyes, long eyelashes, and deep dimples. She had begged Cari to rename her Pixie Dust. She and Ben had laughed it off, but the nickname stuck.

Cari set the picture down. She continued her journey down memory lane until her eyes came to rest on a framed photo. She, Ben, and the kids were grinning, despite the cold. They were gathered around a freshly cut Christmas tree. It turned out to be their last trip to the tree farm as a family. The smiling faces in the photo weren’t prepared for the heartache to come the following spring when five became four.

Cari dropped to the bench in front of the keys. Unaware of what she would play, her fingers found a melody. Raw emotions bubbled up from the depths of her soul. Slow and thick with emotion, music began to drift to the heavens.

Cari played music late into the night as a feeling of peace enveloped her. She glanced up through what used to be the roof. Pinpoints of light dotted the heavens. Hugging her arms tight around her against the chilly night air, she made a wish on the stars. Turning on the polished wooden bench, she took one last look around the room. Countless moments—wonderful, bittersweet, and heartbreaking—had all taken place within these walls. Cari knew it was time for changes that went beyond paint on the walls and new curtains. Rebuilding would be the first step in making a fresh start, but there would need to be significant change. Cari decided to speak with Ray tomorrow. She wondered what could be possible without changing the footprint of the house. Exhaustion invaded her weary bones. New ideas would have to wait until tomorrow. Without a backward glance, she left the room and crawled up the stairs. Sliding between the cool sheets, drained, she fell into a dreamless sleep.


Soft notes wafted over to Ray, sitting in the dark on his patio. The melody tugged at his heart. In his mind’s eye, he could see tears sliding unnoticed down Cari’s cheeks. There had been countless nights when she played for an unseen audience.

As Ray listened, tonight wasn’t any different. Cari poured her heart and soul into each note, her heartbreak floating on the summer night’s breeze. As the night wore on, she migrated to soft romantic jazz. From his own experience, she was working through pain that had nothing to do with wood and plaster. Every person had their own way of coping. Cari was releasing a part of her past that had been taken from her forever.

Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):

What makes your featured book a must-read?

This later in life romance is a great remind it’s never to late to have a second chance at love.

Giveaway –

Enter to win a $40 Amazon gift card:

Open Internationally. You must have a valid Amazon US or Amazon Canada account to win. Runs January 10 – January 18, 2023. Winner will be drawn on January 19, 2023.

Author Biography:

Award-winning and best-selling author Lucinda Race is a lifelong fan of fiction. As a young girl, she spent hours reading mystery and romance novels and getting lost in the fun and hope they represent. While her friends dreamed of becoming doctors and engineers, her dreams were to become a writer—a novelist.

As life twisted and turned, she found herself writing nonfiction but longed to turn to her true passion. After developing the storyline for the McKenna Family Romance series, it was time to start living her dream. Her fingers practically fly over computer keys she weaves stories about with mystery and happily ever afters.

Lucinda lives with her two little dogs, a miniature long hair dachshund and a shitzu mix rescue, in the rolling hills of western Massachusetts. When she's not at her day job, she’s immersed in her fictional worlds. And if she’s not writing mystery, suspense and romance novels, she’s reading everything she can get her hands on.

Social Media Links:

Lucinda’s Heart Racers Reader Group

Linked In



My favorite book/series is Driven by K. Bromberg


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Thank you, Lucinda, for sharing your book in our Book Series Starter Bookish Event!

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