When I taught fifth grade, I asked my students to keep track of their favorite lines from books. They had a section in their "writer's notebook" where they recorded descriptions or dialogue or anything else that got their attention. At the time, my favorite example was from the first page of The Relatives Came, a picture book by Cynthia Rylant: "They left when their grapes were nearly purple enough to pick, but not quite." Thanks to Theresa Ragan's Having My Baby, I have a new favorite quote from a book: "'You're making the ladies nervous, and truthfully, you've got me wondering too - what is your business with this woman?' Derrick pried his gaze from the woman's stomach and raised his eyes to Jill's. 'She's having my baby.'" BEST. LINE. EVER.
Derrick Baylor is a successful player in the NFL. However, before he made it big, he sold his sperm in a desperate move for cash. Despite sending the money back and requesting that his "donation" be destroyed, Derrick receives a letter saying that his sample has been selected by a client. Derrick hires a private investigator, and finds Jill pregnant with his child. After Ryan is born, Derrick and Jill navigate being parents when they are strangers to each other.
This was such a fun and flirty book! Derrick is just adorable. Of course, I think he is more fantasy or science fiction than romantic fiction, but we can all suspend reality and pretend that people like this really exist. All of the back-and-forth with Derrick's family members was fast and highly entertaining. I loved Jill's friend Sandy - especially how she was able to change throughout the book.
I give this book three-and-a-half hearts. It doesn't have the "make you think beyond the book" of a four heart book, but it definitely did have the "think about the characters long after you've finished the book" of a five star book. I really want to hang out with Derrick and Jill. :-)