I really enjoy a good hate-to-love, enemies-to-lovers romance when it’s done well, but sadly, this one missed the mark.2.5 stars – Historical Romance
I really enjoy a good hate-to-love, enemies-to-lovers romance when it’s done well, but sadly, this one missed the mark. The H/h were both awful, annoying characters, and I especially despised the hero. They were horrible, downright nasty to each other for almost the entire book, and their constant meanness and perpetual fighting was exhausting. The bickering and animosity eclipsed the book, and I wanted more actual romantic development between the H/h. I just didn’t feel the love, and there definitely wasn’t enough groveling to satisfy me. But the writing was still good and the audiobook narrator was fantastic, so it held my interest....more
This poignant novella, which gives Rosemary Beach fans the backstory of Harlow’5 – Beautiful, Bittersweet, Heartrending – stars – Contemporary Romance
This poignant novella, which gives Rosemary Beach fans the backstory of Harlow’s parents, rock legend, Kiro Manning, and his one and only true and forever love, Emily, is Abbi Glines at her very best. It’s such a beautiful, emotional, sweet, and heartbreaking story. *sniffle* I absolutely loved it! I’d recommend reading Harlow’s books, Take a Chance and One More Chance, before this story to have complete understanding and better appreciation for it.
There are so many touching quotable lines/moments from this novella, but here are my most sigh-and-sob-worthy favorites.
(view spoiler)[With one kiss, my life had been altered. It would follow a different path now. One where a woman owned my heart.
“I love you, Emily. I shouldn’t have told you for the first time when I was about to sink inside of you, but I couldn’t keep it in. I’m so fucking in love with you it scares me. I’ve never been in love. I may suck at this.”
But I’d daydreamed about it. I’d thought of ways to propose and imagined life as a husband and a dad. I just wanted to live this life with Emily and our baby. I kissed her as I covered hand with my own. “Mine. This is mine,” I repeated between kisses, and held her against me. “Marry me, Emmy. I want you to be my wife. I want you to have my name. I was waiting until the perfect moment, when I had the perfect ring, but I can’t think of anything more perfect than right here and right now.”
“I love you, Emily. I will always love you. This life and the one after and the one after that. I will always only love you.” Her soft laughter filled the room. “We only get one life,” she said. “I don’t believe that. I won’t accept it. I want a million lives with you. You’re my heaven.”
“She looks like you,” I said as I studied the baby’s small face. “I see you in her, too.” I thought she was imagining things, but I didn’t care. I wanted my daughter to look like her mother. I’d have two angels on this earth now. “I’ll keep her safe. I’ll keep you both safe. My girls will always be the most important people in my life. Nothing will ever come before you two. I swear it.” “Thank you for this. For her. For giving me this life.”
“I love you, Kiro Manning. Thank you for showing me the man no one else gets to see.”
In every lifetime, I believe that each soul is given one mate. Don’t get me wrong, I think that a person can fall in love more than one time. But finding your soul mate is a different matter altogether. You don’t just love that person, you adore him or her. That person is your world. Your reason for living. The one thing in this life that will make everything OK. When you find your soul mate, you’ve found your purpose. To love that one person. To experience life with that one person. Problem with all this is, what happens when you lose your soul mate? When that one person you will love for fucking eternity is taken from you? It destroys you. It shatters you. It takes a part of you that you will never get back. No one can heal you. No one can take your soul mate’s place. That person will forever be your other half. Your one true love.
I was lost. Until Emily. She changed me. She showed me the color in life. She gave me a reason to love this life I was given. She loved me in a way no one has ever loved me. Emily is my soul mate. In this life and in the next, she will be the one soul who completes me.
Now, twenty years later, I sit beside my wife, her soft, fragile hand in mine. We look out over the lake, and I tell her stories of our past. I remind her how much I love her. And I remind her that I will love her in the next life, too. She may no longer be able to speak, and her body may no longer work the way it once did, but inside is my Emmy. She remembers all our adventures together. She knows that for a short time, we had it all.
I press a kiss to her cheek and hold her face in my hands. This woman is my salvation. She is my anchor in this world. “My angel,” I whisper to her, reminding her who she is to me.(hide spoiler)]