Violet Smith and Zach Aubrey have history…
…the kind of history he regrets and she wishes she could forget.
She was the girl. The only girl. Ever.
Nine years have passed since heavy-metal songwriter, Zach, slept with, then walked away from, his best friend, Violet. But that doesn’t change the fact that he’s never gotten over her.
He shattered her heart.
Despite the years that have passed, chick-lit novelist, Violet, vividly recalls the pain of Zach’s rejection, and hates that she’s never been able to completely let go of the brooding boy who turned his back on her.
When the rocker and the writer find themselves thrown back together in a strange twist of fate, their chemistry is just as scorching as ever, but old wounds don’t just disappear. Even if Zach can explain why he walked away from Violet, can she find the courage to trust him again? Together they will discover if a love that broke them both is worth a second chance at forever.
Playing songs, playing for keeps…
…Playing for Love at Deep Haven
“I was standing with the wrong guy, and the right guy was standing in front of me. All you needed to do was put out your hand out to me. Say my name. Anything, Zach. Any sign that you wanted me and I would have run to you.”
The reunion trope is probably my favourite. It means that there’s more time in the book for the drama and complications to unfold because there’s already a deep connection between the characters. It also lends itself to a lot of angst.
This book is almost entirely focused on two characters. There’s not a lot of interference from others. In a situation like this you’re going to hope you can connect with these two people, and I’m happy to say I definitely did.
The thing that seems to be disappearing from the romance genre at the moment is realism. I’m tired of reading about characters who are immediately, desperately in love for no reason, characters who have zero personality but a huge collection of clichéd traits (the tattoos, the crappy attitude etc.). You might appreciate the “hot sex” or whatever, but you’re left feeling empty because when it comes down to it, there’s nothing remotely interesting about the cardboard cutout people on the page.
So what I really appreciated about Violet and Zach was that they were so… normal, I guess you’d say. They’ve been separated for nine years, and the geeky guy she knew at university has turned into a tattooed, pierced tough guy. Literally any other book you’ll read, this would be the point where Violet swoons over his new “hot” look. In this book, she doesn’t like what she sees. It takes her a little bit to warm up to him as he is now. And the same goes the other way; it takes a little getting used to for Zach to see the girl he loved in the woman she is now.
There’s not a huge amount of conflict in this story; what it is is a book about two people reluctantly but also desperately finding their way back to each other after a short-lived and disastrous relationship when they were too young to deal with their feelings. Basically, it is exactly what I hoped it would be.
There’s – thank God – a total absence of the bizarre clichés and the misogyny that seem to have crept back into contemporary romance in the past couple of years. These are flawed people, but they’re not immature idiots.
Oh, and everyone in Europe and Australasia loves blue Christmas lights! It’s not just these two!
If you like reunion romances (and – in my non-biased opinion! – everyone should), you might want to look into this book.
Review copy provided by the author.