Review: The Ones Who Got Away by Roni Loren

Posted January 17, 2018 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 23 Comments

Review: The Ones Who Got Away by Roni Loren
The Ones Who Got Away

One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Series: The Ones Who Got Away #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Released on January 2, 2018
Pages: 354
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

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The Delight

Relevant, passionate, healing-filled Reunion Romance by one of the most intuitive writers out there for deep human motivation and emotion had me in high anticipation for the beginning of a new series by a favorite author.


The Ones Who Got Away took me to a contemporary world that most of us are fortunate we will never have to experience- the survivor of a mass shooting.  Exploring the aftermath and pairing it with a nearly desperate, cathartic romance that was always meant to be sent me to so many places inside my mind and heart.  In few other author’s hands would I trust them to tell a story like this and get it right.  I do not say that to be dramatic, but because its true.  I wasn’t even nervous that Roni Loren would fail to show a group of high school shooting survivors a decade later, capturing their past thoughts and actions as teens, then young adults, and now the adult versions.  Oh yes, at the heart, we have a salacious and passionate reunion romance between the jock and the artsy girl from the other side of the tracks, but this is twisted up in PTSD symptoms, people just getting by, and oh, the honesty and lust for life that happens when they trigger something in each other because they do know that life is an iffy thing.

That said, Finn and Livvy are gun shy about relationships.  For Finn, as an undercover FBI agent, he knows he only has just the summer before he gets sent deep undercover again and he is filled with darkness and barely holds onto his true self by a thread .  And for Livvy, she can only make things work if she stays detached.  People she loves leave and die like her mom and Finn and all the kids gunned down and she doesn’t believe her splintered, damaged, nightmare-ridden self can connect with anyone.  I wanted them to heal and heal together so badly.

The pair of them were combustible together.  They were secretly dating in high school because Finn’s family and even Livvy’s would have fought them on it, but now as adults, they are like gasoline and a match.  Up they go as soon as they get near each other.  Honest, sexy, dirty talking and hot sweaty sexy times ensue.  Livvy is a firecracker and drives Finn wild and back into a lighter, happier place and Finn is a smoldering hottie that pushes her through her ice walls and makes her release her artistic, passionate, devil may care self.  They are good together and I was left with no doubts.  Even when they were on the outs, they were mature, honest, caring, and oh so in love.

Beyond these two, I liked the other layers to this story and setting the stage for the other series stories to come.  Livvy and the other survivor girlfriends she has that all do a time capsule letter and realize that none are living up to their teen self dreams, but also realize that they have each other..  Finn and Becca dealing with their friendship, her teen crush, and their shared past.  And the need to find closure with Finn’s family.

I know that I have totally gushed and rambled through this review, but I’m still on a reader high and wanted to convey the fabulousness that I was feeling so others would catch the bug and go grab this one.

My thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.


Romance Roundabout #16 CR
New Release #3
Literary Pickers #16 Napkin
Books N Tunes #3 COYER #30 Tune: J Geils Band’s Love Stinks


Review Need You Tonight by Roni Loren  


About Roni Loren

Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. Though she’ll forever be a New Orleans girl at heart, she now lives in Dallas with her husband and son.

If she’s not working on her latest sexy story, you can find her reading, watching reality television, or indulging in her unhealthy addiction to rockstars, er, rock concerts. Yeah, that’s it. She is the National Bestselling Author of The Loving on the Edge series from Berkley Heat.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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  • I read one book by this author and didn’t care for it, but I’ll tell you what – this book is calling my name! I can’t wait to read this one. I’m glad to see you loved it so much!

    Great review.

    • Book temptress does her job. *pats self on the back*

      But, seriously, I’m so glad you’re into giving this one a shot, Angie. 🙂

  • Oh wow, this sounds like a really good story.

  • All of yall are making me regret not grabbing this one haha I’ll have to see if my library has it 😀

    • I hear you. I’ve skipped some that I just couldn’t fit into the schedule and then wished somehow I’d managed. LOL
      Crossing my fingers that its at the library or on Overdrive for you.

  • I have heard SUCH good things about this one. I haven’t read it, and I’m a little nervous it might be too much for me. But I think I need to give it a go.

    • I was leery at first, too. But I think she wrote it pretty good with a balance of the authentic and romantic. Hope you like it, too, Quinn.

  • Debbie Haupt

    I totally agree Sophia Rose this was an amazing read in a storyline I would never thought to read but it really worked. I can’t wait to see the next in the series

    • Yeah, Becca’s book has me so impatient.

      I was wary of the subject matter, but really like her writing so I trusted her to do it justice and she did. 🙂

      • Debbie Haupt

        Nice to know this was my first book by her.

        • Yeah, most of her writing is for her Loving on the Edge BDSM romance series. She’s got a few other erotics and one cute New Adult novella. This is her first dip into contemporary as far as I know, but she brought her great ability to write characters, situation, and romance.

  • I love the sound of this book and everyone seems to love it. This is one that I am going to have to fit into my reading schedule.

    • Most definitely, Carole. 🙂 I think its going to be a strong series.

  • Karen

    I’ve heard that this is REALLY good.

    For What It’s Worth

  • oh yes I agree…I definitely had a reader high after reading this book as well….definitely left a strong impression for sure. I can’t wait for book 2 this spring!! 🙂

  • I’ve not tried this author, but you’re not the first who’ve talked about how great this book is. I’ll have to see about trying it one day. Great review.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • I’ve been reading her Loving on the Edge books for years. She writes with such depth in her characters and their relationships that I knew she would handle a hot topic like a mass shooting well. Hope you get the chance, Melanie!

  • This sounds like a pretty emotional read with how they are the survivors of a mass shooting. It sounds interesting how the past and present day tie together and the reunion type of romance sounds really well done. It must be great seeing two such managed and broke character connect with each other. They do sound like a great couple who are good for each other. Great review!

    • I agree. The backdrop of the mass shooting has defined them for so long that its neat how they are starting to heal with each other now.