This one didn’t go quite the way I was hoping, but it was a pretty adorable romance. After reading the blurb, I was really hooked on the letter-writing concept, falling in love from a distance (and that GORGEOUS cover reeled me in). It just… didn’t play out the way I anticipated, lol. This is 100% instalove from the first interaction, and that is a huge, HUGE part of the story. I’m not necessarily against instalove, but there are levels of it – and this was extreme. The characters are also very young, and the book reads that way. Those are really the only drawbacks though, because the hero is the SWEETEST guy and I loved the swoony vibes. I love the idea of a sweet, strong, alpha hero who falls hard and fast… I just wish it wasn’t THE focus of the book.
The story follows Ford, a 21-year-old soldier from a long line of military men. When he joined the Army after high school, it seemed like the natural thing to do. But when Ford meets a woman who catches his heart at first sight, it has him re-evaluating his plans. While he’s always been a relationship guy, Ford didn’t spend much time dwelling on the future – until Shayne. She is a game-changer, and spending time apart sounds like the sweetest torture. As the two fall head over heels in a matter of days, they have to navigate the complexities of their relationship while allowing it space to grow.
My favorite part of the book is definitely Ford. This team of authors knows how to write sexy, swoony men – and he is another great one. He is SUPER young and all kinds of adorable. I loved that he didn’t fight his feelings, and it was so refreshing to read about a relationship guy. Shayne, eh, Shayne was fine. There was a whole part of her character that could’ve been developed further, but the instalove sort of took over. The instalove was a lot. This would’ve easily been a 4-star read for me if that had been taken down a notch. I would’ve needed more falling from afar and a stronger final act to consider a 5-star rating. There is some triggering content towards the end, and I’m not a big fan of the way it was handled. Mostly, this just didn’t live up to the expectations that I had for it. I’m sure many readers will love the sweetness, but it wasn’t a total win for me.
SPOILER-filled content warning: there are several potential triggers in Shayne’s troubled past, but those are mostly glossed over. However, there is a situation at the end of the book that comes out of nowhere (loss of pregnancy). If that is a trigger for you, then you might be caught off-guard by its sudden appearance (on the page). It definitely put a damper on the sweet, light feel of the rest of the book. I personally don’t think it was necessary.
I’ve never had anyone look at me the way he looks at me, like I could be his whole world.
Ford is different from other guys. For starters, he doesn’t know about my troubled past—the one this small town won’t let me forget, no matter how hard I try. Being with him, I can be myself. Without judgment. Without pretending. He’s unlocked a part of me I wasn’t sure still existed.
Just as quickly as we find each other, it’s time to say goodbye. Ford might feel a world away, but reading his letters and sharing starry nights with him keeps us close until I can be back in his arms.
From the first moment I laid eyes on her, I knew I needed more time.
While on leave with my best friend from the Army, I finally meet his cousin, Shayne. She’s unexpected—in the best of ways. I quickly realize she could be exactly who I need her to be—my everything.
As long as my life belongs to the military, I can only offer her promises and distance. Maybe getting in involved while enlisted is a mistake, but I’m not ready to let her go. From afar, we find something neither of us was looking for, and it’s all possible beneath the fallen stars.
About the Authors:
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kaylee Ryan has been crowned the Queen of Swoon by her readers. With nearly fifty romance books under her belt, she’s known for penning happily ever afters with heart. When she’s not writing, you can find her with a book in her hand or hanging out with her family where she resides in her home state of Ohio.
USA Today Bestselling Author Lacey Black is a Midwestern girl with a passion for reading, writing, and shopping. She carries her e-reader with her everywhere she goes so she never misses an opportunity to read a few pages. Always looking for a happily ever after, Lacey is passionate about contemporary romance novels and enjoys it further when you mix in a little suspense. She resides in a small town in Illinois with her husband, two children, and three rowdy chickens.
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