The Heartbalm Effect

The Heartbalm Effect

For twenty-eight-year-old Rachel Levange, arriving at the nondescript burg of Gnometown, Alaska, to begin her residency, she’s worried she’s accepted less than and is wondering how she’s going to get her career back on track with a residency at the Mayo Clinic. Her father, the head of surgery in her hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, has always pulled the strings for her, but when she decided to strike out on her own, even she was surprised that the best she could manage was a clinic in Alaska.
Paul Livingston, the head doctor—and only doctor—at this hardscrabble clinic, has seen a whole host of residents come and go in the five years he’s been running this clinic, and he’d love to find someone who loves the place as much as he does, but thus far, nobody cares for the clinic the same way he does. His ex-wife certainly didn’t. She’s now a doctor at the Fairbanks Memorial Hospital, and married to Paul’s former friend, who’s running the surgery center. His ex-wife betrayed him by pretending to take an interest in an indigenous tribe, the Tlingits, but it was a ruse that she employed to be alone with her boyfriend, and her present husband.
At first, Rachel annoys him by looking down her nose at everything, but when he sets her straight, he’s struck to the core by how upset she becomes. She apologizes for offending him, and he can’t help but be mesmerized by her bright blue eyes.
He decides to give her a chance.
As time goes on, and as Rachel begins to understand just how much the clinic, and the people, mean to Paul, her off-hand manner softens.
Time passes and Paul finds himself falling for the slender brunette.
When Paul reminds her that the time is fast approaching for his monthly visit to the Tlingit Reservation, located fifty miles away on country back roads, she agrees to come with him to get to know the Tlingits.
Rachel then receives an email advising her she’s on the wait-list for the Mayo Clinic, and the email accidentally ends up in Margie’s email box.
Paul arrives at the clinic and is surprised to see the boxes as well, a shipment from Amazon, and Margie informs him what Rachel has done.
The following morning, Paul arrives at the downtown hotel in Gnometown where Rachel is staying during her residency. As he waits for her to appear in the lobby, he is overcome with emotion at the sight of so many happy families enjoying their Alaska vacation. He sees men his own age and younger, with their families, and he realizes he’s lonely and longing for a family. He and his wife were married for the five years during which time he tried to get the clinic up and running, and not once in all that time did she ever express an interest in starting a family.
He’s starting to feel life is passing him by.
The trip to the Tlingit Reservation forces Rachel and Paul to examine their relationship and what they truly mean to each other.
Will Rachel accept this hardscrabble life over a prestigious appointment to the Mayo Clinic?
And will Paul make it clear to her exactly how he feels about her?
And if she finds she loves him, will it be enough?