“I miss you. Every day, I miss you. Even when you’re home I miss you, because I know you’re always going to leave again.”
I absolutely LOVED this book!!! It was everything I’d hoped it would be and more. A captivating story with gorgeous emotions that perfectly balanced the heart-wrenching and heart-melting sides, along with some seriously sexy hotness that had me fanning myself for pages on end. A truly beautiful love story.
While this book can be read as a complete standalone, it also takes place in the same world as another standalone, Wounded. You do not have to read Wounded first (or at all), but I did love it and it’s another one of my top favorites so I do highly recommend both books. Each one is about a different couple.
From the moment I started reading, I was completely drawn into this story. By the end of the prologue there were tears in my eyes and I literally did not put this book down until I was finished reading it.
The story is told in alternating points of view between Reagan (the heroine) and Derek (the hero). Just to clarify something that I’ve been asked about a lot: Reagan is the heroine, Tom is her husband (who is captured and tragically killed in an ambush), Derek is the hero of the story (also captured with Tom, but is the one who ends up going home). This is not a spoiler as this is made clear very early on in the first chapter or so. But so many of you have asked me about this that I just thought I’d explain it.
When Reaegan gets word that her husband has gone missing in action, her entire world crumbles. Pregnant, alone, and with no answers, she struggles on and keeps hoping that just maybe he’d come home.
“It’s an impossible thing… I don’t think you do cope.
You just survive it, one day at a time.”
Meanwhile, a world away, Derek and Tom were being held as prisoners of war while Tom was dying of a fatal wound. The only thing Tom had to hold onto was a letter from Reagan, a letter he made Derek read to him over and over again until the end. After Tom died, the only thing that kept Derek going was that letter and his promise to his brother in arms to make it home to his wife and tell her his last words…
“He should’ve been the one to make it. I think about that every fucking day. It should be him here. Not me. So — so I’m sorry. So, SO sorry. It should be him, but — but I couldn’t save him.”
There was SO much emotion wrapped up in every single part of this book. When Derek came home, he’d lost more than just his friend. The memories of everything he went through haunted him whether he was asleep or awake, his guilt over surviving when his friend had had so much more to live for was a constant weight over him. He was scarred more than just physically… a PTSD-plagued POW survivor.
“Raw, healing. Wounds to the body heal faster than those within.”
What I loved was that the romance was very slow building. Neither of them intended for it to happen, they both had all the natural worries, guilts, concerns over it, and it just was something they fell into. I really appreciated SO much that they both talked about their feelings openly. There was no “miscommunication drama” which was a welcome relief in this already heart-wrenching story. It was refreshing to have a story where the drama genuinely was solely derived from circumstance, not from mistakes.
“You deserve better than that.” Long sigh. “Better than a fucked-up mess like me.”
Women find confidence attractive. That’s a fact. And I’m no different. But there’s also something about vulnerability, and something about the kind of strength it takes to admit to vulnerability.”
As mentioned in the prologue, Reagan is pregnant at the start of the book with her and Tom’s child. Little Tommy (who is a 2-3 year old for most of the book) was an absolutely precious character. And let me tell you, the scenes with Derek and Tommy — this soldier who’d been to hell and back, and this little innocent child — bonding over anything from playtime to making pancakes was absolutely HEART-MELTING.
This book is hot. Erotic. Sexy. Let me repeat: HOT. EROTIC. SEXY. For the most part, I loved that about it, but honestly, my one and only complain about this book is that… and I can’t believe I’m saying this but… I actually feel like there was a leeeetle bit too much sex in this book. BUT a) it was very well written, b) I loved the characters, and c) I’d much rather read about that than stupid drama so *shrug* haha it’s really not that big of a complaint. It’s more just something I felt.
I really love reading about characters overcoming hardship and getting through things that might otherwise tear them down. The thing with damaged characters though is that it’s really up to the writing to make them seem believable and without a doubt, I felt fully connected to these characters and their story.
As a reader, I’m on a constant search for books like Captured. I have admittedly high standards when it comes to books. I don’t just want to read a story, I want to LIVE it. FEEL it. I want it to take over my life. I want to be drawn so deeply into the story that I’m unable to think about anything other than just wanting to read more of it. I want my heart to be overflowing with the emotions I feel for these characters. I want to laugh when they laugh, cry when they cry. I want to CARE. There are times as a reader where I’ll try even a few books in a row that just don’t have that and I naturally start wondering — is it me? Are my feels broken? Am I just in a weird mood? … But then I start a book like Captured and from the first page, it owns my heart. And I’m reminded that THIS is the type of book that is the reason I love to read.
Rating: 4.5 stars. Standalone Adult romance.
Both books in this world are complete standalones.
You can read either one without the other if you wish, but they are connected.