Hailee and Corwin last saw one another 10 years ago, at their high school graduation. In those 10 years, Corwin has been a regular feature in Hailee’s dreams, so when she runs into him again, she has to pinch herself to be sure she’s awake.
Are Hailee and Corwin being handed another chance to be together, and will they be able to overcome secrets that will be revealed?
Read on for my review!
is a sweet friends-to-lovers type romance. I say sweet because, for much of the book, Hailee and Corwin have the type of relationship you might expect more from innocent high schoolers than from experienced adults–one rife with timidity and miscommunication
“I found a secret, foolish pleasure in the thought that his dog liked me.”
Oh, and also that silly tendency we all had when we were younger (I mean…I certainly don’t do things like this now. Uh uh. Nope. Not this lady…) to try to find meaning and secret signs in every little action and interaction.
“I recognized that he no longer felt alone in life, and by knowing his secret, neither did I.”
At times, I found this juvenile dynamic incredibly frustrating and unrealistic, especially in an adult romance novel. As I thought more about it, however, I realized that the author was attempting to establish a parallel between the relationship Hailee and Corwin had as teenagers and the budding romance they are discovering as adults. By creating this parallel, and then intersecting them with the stabilizing presence of honesty (through secrets revealed), she forges a relationship that can defy all odds and withstand all storms.
That being said, and although I was finally able to discern the author’s possible intent
, I do think that there was an overwhelming and, at times, distracting authorial presence in this book. Often, because of awkward tones and phrasing, I’d find myself aware of how the words were being crafted in an attempt to create a certain response or image, rather than actually feeling the intended emotion or connection to the characters and story.
Because I know that authorial presence is a pet peeve of mine, and because I can be a bit picky about incorrect vocabulary usage, I give the book a pass on those points. I think that, despite these things, Stephanie Alba succeeded in creating a story that captures the beauty of a love that transcends missed opportunities and past mistakes.