Keeper and Kid by Edward Hardy

keeper-and-kid Eight years ago, James Keeper fell in love with his upstairs neighbor in Boston, a sassy pastry chef with gray eyes and a fierce attitude. The got married, found a dog, and shopped for cilantro. But conflicting schedules and a real estate deal gone bad took its toll on the twenty-somethings.

One divorce later, the hand-me-down chairs were separated, the potato-masher custody settles, and Keeper moved to Providence to work with his best friends selling antiques at a quirky shop called Love and Death.

A new job, a new love, and a new life now in place, Keeper is in a comfortable situation. Business is steady, Leah (the new love) is intriguing and passionate, and Keeper’s friends always turn up for Sunday evening Card Night. But one phone call from his former mother-in-law changes everything. And so days later, Keeper comes away with a son her never knew he had, and life all of the suddenly takes on a new meaning.

Leo, the precocious three-year-old who spots Keeper’s square chin, is more than a handful — he eats only round food, refuses to bathe, think he’s a bear, and refuses to Leah as “that man.” For a guy who never though he’d be a parent, Keeper is thrown headfirst into fatherhood – and has no idea what to do. As Keeper and Leo adjust to the shock of each other and their suddenly very different lives, Keeper begins to open up to the people in his lives in turns strange and heartwarming, funny and painful. But some, like Leah, aren’t so eager for change.”

I walked away for this novel with mixed emotions. It’s a great story, none the less. But what was up with Grace? Why didn’t Keeper just say “forget you,” or a version of that, to Leah? Does Leo ever call Keeper “Daddy”? Well?

As I said, nonetheless, this is a great book. It’s heart wrenching and funny at the same time. This coming-of-age, “hero’s journey” story was enjoyable, not like some I’ve read in the past. In fact, I finished it in one afternoon, it was that good. I am tempted to read it again if only just to answer my own questions.

Others’ Thoughts:

Book Mentioned:

  • Hardy, Edward. Keeper and Kid. New York: Thomas Dunne Books, 2008. Print. 304 pgs. ISBN:0312375247. Source: Library.
Book Cover © Thomas Dunne Books.


  1. LisaMM

    Hey! Thanks for the shout-out! I’m glad to hear you liked it. It was a quick read but thoroughly enjoyable, IMO. I did wonder what was up with Grace and her husband but just chalked it up to normal marital ups and downs. Nice review.


  2. Jeane

    I liked this book too, but some parts about it bugged me. The whole Grace thing. And why Keeper just couldn’t get over some stuff.


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