|Graphic Credit: Victoria Lynn Designs|
Y’all, let me catch my breath!
Sniffle, sniffle, dry my eyes.
Ahem. This review may be a hot mess. Why? you wonder. I’ll tell you.
This book wrecked me.
Oh, it’s in a great way, believe me, but I’m still wrecked! You see, this book sort of sneaked up on me. It was gallivanting along in a lighthearted, contemporary romance kind of way… and then BOOM! All these emotional things started happening, and they all made sense in the plot and everything, but they blindsided me. Completely blindsided me.
They shouldn’t have. I should have seen them coming. I’m a writer too, for goodness’ sake! But I did not see a certain couple of plot twists coming at all, and they waylaid me. Hard!
Even as it was happening and tears were gushing out of my eyeballs, I was happy about it. Truly, I was. Even as I was fretting for the beloved characters who’d crept into my heart when I wasn’t looking, I was grateful that a talented author had dug in deep and delivered the tough but very good stuff.
This… this, y’all, is what I aspire to as a writer myself: To dig the trenches of emotion and pain and live in them long enough to crank out a story (or fifty) that will rip my readers’ hearts clean out of their chests… and then shove ’em back in again by the end of the book.
Maybe those hearts won’t look the same. Maybe they’ll have bruises and scars. But perhaps they’ll also have some patches of healing and a fresh stitch of hope.
That’s what this book by Sarah Grace Grzy did for me. It’s what I hope it will do for you too.
|Graphic Credit: Victoria Lynn Designs|
I’m already eager for whatever is up next for this author. Might I suggest featuring a certain doctor-brother of Alyvia’s? He may have only had one or two scenes in this book, but those moments were enough to intrigue me into wanting to know much, much more.
More notes on this book, because there were other things I wanted to mention… The balance between the two leads’ jobs (which were featured beautifully), personal issues and lives, and the romance between the leads was spot-on gorgeous. The only thing that felt shoved to the side at times was whether or not Alyvia could crack through an elderly patron’s tough exterior. That thread got lost, unfortunately. However, the bookstore for Alyvia and paramedic/medical angle for Tyler were amazingly written. I especially enjoyed how the medical terms slipped so easily into Tyler’s POV vocabulary. This is such a powerful touch for creating deep POV, and Sarah Grace delivered perfectly on this aspect.
The bond between Tyler and his daughter, Murrae, was especially adorable. This really sold me on this story from the jump, and it didn’t let up at all through to the finale.
Bookshop stories are some of my favorites, and this one was cozy and sweet and delightful. I wish Happy Haven was real, because I would so want to work there. Honestly, it very much felt like the author climbed into my head to imagine the place. Only, the above-stairs apartment would need to be three times as big, at least.
There may be other things I wanted to mention, but I’ve run out of notes. This book didn’t leave much time for jotting things down, as it was a quick read that kept me riveted. So maybe I’ll have more insights on a second, third, or fifteenth reading.
In the meantime, why not purchase your own copy so you can discover this little gem for yourself?
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from JustRead Tours and Victoria Lynn Designs. I also pre-ordered a copy of the paperback. All opinions in this review are my own.
|Graphic Credit: JustRead Tours|
About the Book:
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.
About the Author:
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. Sarah Grace 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.
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Never Say Goodbye and Live Without You are included in The Great Review Race, a Multi Author Monthly Giveaway. Submit your reviews in the form on this website to be entered into the giveaway! April/May Winner will receive a $20 Barnes and Noble gift card!