Knocked Up in Alaska
Knocked Up in Alaska by Samanthe Beck is the third and final book in her Captivity Alaska series. I enjoyed the first two but I think this one is my favourite.
Lilah Iquat is pregnant. Young and pregnant with a dead man’s baby. When pilot Shay Shanahan died in a plane crash, Lilah had just told him that their one-night stand had resulted in an unexpected pregnancy. And now, on the night of her twenty-first birthday surprise party, she’s just told her mother Rose the news. With the resulting fiasco (not unexpected since her mother had been a teenaged single parent and had warned her daughter over and over again not to end up like her), Lilah needs a place to stay.
Ford Langley, former military man and currently the bartender and owner of The Tipsy Goose, is quick to offer Lilah a place to stay. Duty and responsibility are his trademarks and he’s determined to be there for a friend in need. Flashbacks to his own teenage years and his pregnant girlfriend who gave birth to a baby girl, Mia, but then shut him out of her life (for the good of the baby when she married someone else) make this his chance to make up for that loss. Of course, he’s also interested in Lilah romantically but has no plans to pursue that, the ten-year age difference between them meaning he’s not comfortable confessing those feelings. So he’ll be her friend, her helping hand – but definitely not her lover. When Lilah makes her attraction to Ford known, will he be able to overcome his misgivings and realize that he has a chance to have everything he’s ever wanted?
This town has really come alive over the trilogy of books centered there, with engaging characters (in particular the Shanahans, who have featured in all of them) and an interesting setting, with the airfield, Captivity Inn and Ford’s bar taking center stage. Lilah and Ford were secondary characters in the earlier books (Wild in Captivity and Playing Dirty in Alaska) and Shay’s death has been a central plot point throughout, with each of the main characters feeling some guilt over his death. In Lilah’s case, because Shay’s plane crashes on the day she tells him her news, she’s sure that it’s her fault. I’ll point out here that Shay appears as a ghost in each of the books, and he interacts a few times with Lilah (she thinks she’s dreaming, as do Shay’s siblings when it happens). This is definitely not a paranormal romance, but it’s an interesting way to get Shay’s point of view across and it doesn’t feel out of place.
Ford’s concerns over the age gap between him and Lilah are understandable. He doesn’t want to be seen as taking advantage of her. She’s lived a sheltered life in Captivity and had plans to go away to college prior to the pregnancy, and her only sexual experience is the one night she spent with Shay. Ford, on the other hand, is experienced (in sex and life) and despite his attraction to Lilah, he really feels like he should keep his hands off her. Of course, Lilah is equally attracted to Ford and they end up in bed together despite Ford’s reservations. It takes a while for Ford to understand and believe that Lilah is old enough to make her own choices, and that she’s choosing him.
When Lilah has the baby – whom she names Shayla – Ford is there for the delivery and then he gets his own surprise – his daughter Mia, who has found out about his existence, has hopped on a plane to come meet him. Past and present collide and Ford finds himself with a teenaged daughter (whom he is ecstatic to have in his life after so long without her) and helping out with a newborn baby. I really enjoyed seeing Ford get to know his daughter and come to realize that his life is so much fuller with these ladies (Lilah, Shayla and Mia) around. The ending is sweet and very satisfying, with some questions answered, problems resolved, family connections mended and Ford and Lilah getting their happy ever after. It’s been great to visit Captivity, Alaska, and it’s a place I’ll happily return to.
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I'm a biochemist and a married mother of two. Reading has been my hobby since grade school, and I've been a fan of the romance genre since I was a teenager. Sharing my love of good books by writing reviews is a recent passion of mine, but one which is richly rewarding.