This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Released on April 1, 2015
Source: Book Tour Provided
I read the first book that took me to Heartache, Tennessee, and my first encounter with the Finley family so I was happy to return there for book two. This time it’s Erin’s story and she encounters a man who needs to heal from his past even as he helps her get over her own recent mistake in love.
The story is book two in a series and there is mention of the situation and characters from book one, but in truth, it could be read alone or out of order.
The story opens with Erin anticipating a trip home to introduce the man she loves to her family and receive his ring on her finger only to discover that he has been hiding a wife and kids on her and has made her ‘the homewrecking other woman’. Erin can’t trust her instinct about love and men it seems so instead she pours her energy into getting the antique store she owns with her sister up and running.
No sooner is Heather for a buying trip than Erin discovers that her sister had been in talks with a TV producer to feature their shop in his show. Remy Wheldon is attractive and wakes her out of her dismals, but she soon learns that he has his own reasons for not wanting a relationship. But they can have a good time while he’s in town, right?
Remy’s wife was murdered while he was away working and he feels a great deal of guilt because of the circumstances. But he had to pick up the pieces to raise his adopted daughter and keep working to the pay the bills. His heart hasn’t been in anything for a while, but he knows that his show is on shaky ground as is his daughter as she acts the part of rebellious teen. Encountering Erin and the helpful, warm people of Heartache are good for him and Sarah both. He is attracted to Erin, but his grief and guilt are still overwhelming. He has nothing to offer this beautiful, caring woman who deserves better.
Oh, how my heart ached for Erin and Remy and Remy’s daughter Sarah who all shared the narration. Like book one, this one hits the reader’s emotions. The situations are such that the emotions are deep, but feel right for the story. There are internal and external struggles, but there is also mature thinking and strong communication so that I found the story compelling.
Remy lost his first love through circumstances though he cares blame on himself. He won’t let himself move on and he struggles with fear that anyone he loves is really a hostage to fate and might die on him. He is attracted to Erin, but feels he doesn’t have anything left to give her in the way of love.
Sarah’s story was just as touching. Her real father who is an awful person is putting pressure on her even as she starts to doubt that Remy cares for her. She was too young to remember her mother so she struggles to understand Remy’s grief and how it changed him. She is so lost and hurting.
Erin was betrayed by love and feels guilty that she was in a relationship with a cheater even though she never knew this. She sees Remy’s guilt as misplaced and realizes that she has essentially been doing the same thing with her own past. This helps her move on and start to engage in life again. She is the stronger of the pair and I loved seeing her open up and put her heart on the line.
The author develops the characters individually alongside the romance that starts as attraction and then backs off to a slow build love. There is no grand, torrid love affair, but a series of smaller encounters that add together. Though gently-paced, sweet, and character-driven, there are some passionate moments.
I liked how the romance is part of the town life and there is an ongoing update to the lives of Erin’s brothers and their family. That grand gesture of Scott’s was right on time and I loved it.
Again, I was sad to leave Heartache behind after the last chapter concluded. I look forward to Heather’s story now. I enjoy these slightly spicy gently paced small town contemporary romances and can easily recommend them to others.
My thanks to Lola’s Blog Tours for providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #32 CR
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Mt. TBR #19
Blogger Shame #3
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