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.
Everyone processes grief in a different way. Faith has lost so much in her young life and is just trying to hold it all together, to survive until next day, clinging on to those dear to her heart and still there for her. She wants to keep everyone happy so that no one else would end up in an accident, and leave too early while angry with her.
Dean escaped his grief, sorrow, and loss, and swore he would never return. Life happens, and he suddenly has to not only face Faith again, but his own responsibility with the events in the past, his grief, and his parents.
The story focus on the process both Faith and Dean go through, to cope with the past, and to get a handle on the grief still inside and burning from years of guilty feelings and remorse.
I had a hard time with Faith, I'll admit that. The codependency she had developed to her brother, her trying to manipulate, influence, and shape her brother's life, the selfish attitude about him succeeding on his own, and 'leaving her behind' all went a little far. I understand she had had tremendous losses in her life, still vulnerable after her father's passing, but to go behind her brother's back, nope. I think she went way too far with her acting up, and I was frustrated with her for the second half of the story.
The lack of communication, not sharing some important information with the rest of the family, that would have saved all the characters involved years of pain and sorrow, was another point of chagrin for me. If everything was solved with one conversation, why wasn't that conversation had years ago?!
Obviously, I truly got into the tale and got emotionally involved, since the story managed to get such a reaction from me. I like how the ending shaped and the platformed it made for the future series. The journey Dean and Faith had to take to get there wasn't without growing pains and soreness. They both went through a transformation, and through that, they were able to find new chances and a new direction in their lives. A little bit like a phoenix rises from the ashes, they were able to make something beautiful, lasting, and successful out of the turmoil they both had previously been.
~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
MY GRADING SCALE:
5 Spoons - Amazing, memorable story that I loved and want to read again. The best of the best and not given lightly
4 Spoons - Fantastic, entertaining story that I enjoyed and connected with and will gladly recommend to readers
3 Spoons - A good story, not much that stood out but I was engaged enough to spend the time to read it through
2 Spoons - A story with some issues, that were a problem to me
1 Spoon - Not for me