Welcome back to the Friday edition of Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we're playing host to a TLC Book Tours promotion starring a few FAB titles from the wonderful folks at Harlequin Books. These particular titles are from their "Heartwarming" collection...a series that focuses on heart warming stories (go figure! ^-^) that make it easy to step into but hard to walk away from. For those that shy from the Contemporary Romance category for fear of content, let me reassure you now...this is so squeaky clean it could be read in Church, but that doesn't mean the feelings aren't there. Ready or not, here comes today's blog tour guest and book of choice...
Grace Note Records
About the book...
The past will always be between them
He swore he'd never return home. Then a flat tire lands Dean Presley back in Grass Lake, Tennessee, and he's forced to confront the woman he left behind. Faith Stratton was once the love of his life. Now her gifted brother could be the rising Nashville star Dean needs for his struggling music label. But it means taking Sawyer away from the horse therapy farm that Faith's so proud of. That won't be easy, especially since those old feelings that started all the trouble… Well, let's just say he can't go back there, because he doesn't want to relive the memories of the terrible accident that drove them apart.
Faith and Dean are a match made in heaven...if they could ACTUALLY get together in the first place. Once upon a time, they were attached but then a twist of fate and a horrible tragedy set things in motion that were never meant to be, including the death of more than just their budding relationship. They say time heals all wounds, but what if the wound itself is never truly dealt with? The surface may look "all better" but underneath, is it truly part of the past or simply festering for a future blow up? It may be true we all deal with loss in our own ways, but DEALING WITH IT is the key and one half of this potential happily ever after never truly sorted through their feelings. That's a lot of bad feelings to bury within, especially when there are so many better ones to feel it up with. As fate would have it, it looks like an unexpected reunion is in order and they'll be doing a whole lot more than catching up. Hearts can be broken, but they can also mend...love is funny that way, as Faith and Dean are about to find out.
Honest to goodness truth....I had the HARDEST time getting into this one. No, really...it was literally painful for me because I wanted to love it SO BADLY, but it just wasn't happening...until it did, and all was well in my reading world. Let me explain but those former feelings though. It wasn't the writing, nor the story line itself, both were something believable, enjoyable, and easy to follow. No, the problem for me was how intent the characters were on blaming themselves or each other (depending on which character we're talking about) for the tragedy that was just that, a tragic accident.
Faith has been blaming herself F-O-R-E-V-E-R, in no small part to our leading man (Dean...you fool!)...so much so that she's almost handicapped herself from ever finding true happiness again. She lives for others instead of herself and while it might sound like my logic there is twisted, trust me when I say she quite literally puts EVERYONE before herself. It's not a kindness when you're not treating yourself kind too. On the other end of the spectrum, we have the horse's behind that is Dean. Yeah, yeah, yeah...he's easy on the eyes even when drenched from head to toe after an unfortunate (or perhaps fated) car mishap, but his grief driven reactions, the gut clenching anger he's held on to, and the distance he ran when everything came crashing down were far from noble moves. At his heart of heart's, he's not a bad guy, and Faith knows that on some level, but the two of them reconnecting is going to take SO MUCH MORE than the power that either of them have. Good thing they have friends up above...
So you see, not all that started less-than-stellar ends up that way. By book's end, I was well invested in BOTH of their stories, as well as that of our songbird Sawyer (who's not so bad a catch either!), the family horse ranch (they offer therapy sessions, how cool is that!), and the whole lot of friends/family in Grass Lake, Tennessee. They're a memorable bunch for many reasons but the biggest one of all is the amount of heart they put into everything they do. We could all use a place like that now, don't you think? Perhaps you could be the start of it in your neck of the woods and watch how the ripples spread beyond your own inner circle....just a thought. Recommended read for Contemporary Fiction fans of all ages.
About the author...
Amy Vastine has been plotting stories in her head for as long as she can remember. An eternal optimist, she studied social work, hoping to teach others how to find their silver lining. Now, she enjoys creating happily ever afters for all to read. This USA Today bestselling author lives outside Chicago with her high school sweetheart-turned-husband, three fun-loving children, and their sweet but mischievous puppy dog.
Special thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours, the Harlequin publicity team, and the authors on this tour for the chance to bring their stories to life from my own experience between the pages (and the review copy too!). (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the other books in the Heartwarming collection, the author, the publisher, or THIS TOUR, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.
Until next time...happy reading!