They say time heals all wounds. But he was finding it a poor painkiller. Tyler Collens has seen grief and loss in his years of experience as a paramedic—but he never expected it to touch his life in such a personal way. The death of his wife eighteen months ago shook his steady world and changed him in more ways than he can count. Time and routine have steadied his feet, and he looks toward the future as he raises his infant daughter—but the past has a tighter grip on him than he knows.
Alyvia Emmerson has never been certain of who she is or where she belongs. Her dad’s abandonment as a teen broke a fragile piece of her heart, but ten years later, she has moved on. Living on her own, she at last has a project to devote herself to: revitalizing a shabby bookstore. But she didn’t count on her dream job revealing the shattered pieces of herself she thought mended long ago.
In this sophomore novel featuring beloved characters from Live Without You, Sarah Grace Grzy explores themes of grief, hope, and second chances in a story that touches both the heart and spirit.
I waited so long to get my hands on this book . . . and finally, I was able to read an eARC. And my, oh my, was it ever good!
I loved the glimpse of Ms. Cecile — who was by far my favourite character in ‘Live Without You’ — and getting to catch up with Piper and Ezra again. And getting to know Ezra’s partner, Tyler, was fun.
Alyvia is a young lady who is struggling after her father deserted her, and Tyler is struggling to come to grips with the death of his wife years before. They meet in a most unconventional way, and it’s definitely friendship at first sight, but nothing more, for several chapters. Which was refreshing, since guy/girl friendships without romantic inclinations are rare in fiction.
And then there’s the sweet little Murrae, who captured my heart completely. She’s such an adorable child!
Tyler and Alyvia form a friendship centered around Murrae and the bookstore, and they have an honesty with each other that we honestly need more of today. That they can call each other out and give advice, get frustrated with each other, apologize, and still be friends, and still have feelings for each other was sweet to see. I’ll be honest: the whole relationship was sweet to watch unfold. And Tyler’s one liners . . . I’m gonna have to remember some of those! “Raisin cookies that look like chocolate chip are why I have trust issues.” Yeah, me too.
Tyler’s devotion to his “Little Rae of Sunshine” was heart wrenching in the best of ways. Watching him navigate parenting by himself, and trying to not hover over her and panic over her bumps and scrapes endeared him even more to my heart. And him knowing when to seek help . . . I’ve been in that situation with a little one before, and it’s definitely hard.
Alyvia’s bookstore is one that I wish I could go visit in real life, it sounds that amazing. And what better heroine that one that curls up with a good book and appreciates classics? Watching her spruce the place up, and laughing over her and Tyler’s antics whilst doing repairs did my heart good. And Alyvia’s brothers are just plain fun. As a girl that has longed for older brothers, but is the oldest herself, I have always wanted that sort of relationship . . . and reading it in books is the next best option, right? They are easy going, they tease each other, they help each other, and the head rubbing — as annoying as it could be — is an affectionate act on their part :D
And then there’s Alyvia’s father, who is so very broken, and trying so hard. . . and watching Alyvia navigate that challenge made her my new second favourite — ’cause Ms. Cecile will never leave first favourite, ever.
The romance in this book was nice and light. Nothing at all untoward, nothing at all cringeworthy. Just a sweet, rambling journey of two people meeting, becoming close friends, and then becoming more than friends. There are no kisses, there are no romantic hugs, just friendly ones, and there are no innuendos. Both the main characters are Christians, and seek God’s guidance throughout the story.
If you’re looking for a sweet contemporary romance, this is the one for you!
I am very thankful to the author for a copy of this book to read and review!
AND it’s free on Amazon right now! That’s right — if you can access a kindle file, you can read the book =) I’d highly suggest you read it and download it . . . and leave a review, letting others know what ya thought of it!
Sarah Grace Grzy is a voracious reader, and if it weren’t for this crazy thing called ‘Life,’ she’d be tempted to spend all her days in front of a wood stove, book in one hand, coffee mug in the other.A lover of learning, she finds enjoyment in many things and has more hobbies than she knows what to do with. Sarah Grace is a freelance web and graphic designer, and when not working, spending time with her ever-growing family, or reading, she can be found painting, playing the piano, or fangirling with her sisters and friends. She inhabits the State of Great Lakes, and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else—unless it meant she could have a baby penguin, in which case, she’d gladly move to the South Pole.
I am a 23 year old young lady who is redeemed and saved from my sin only by the grace of God. A bibliophile at heart with a love of history who desires to see the Word of God practically applied to all aspects of our daily lives -- in our homes, in the grocery store, in the political realm. I strive to put my jumbled, chaotic thoughts down onto paper -- reducing them into black and white rows, letters, sentences. Into some semblance of sanity. And I share them here with all of you, where I can challenge you, make you think, and cause you to ask questions. I am the oldest of eleven children living the country life in the deep south.