I’d had this book on my reading list for a while now because several readers had recommended it to me and since the sequel, Finding Joy, was recently released, I decided that now was the perfect time to try it out!
I don’t want to give away anything here so I’ll try and only give you a general idea of what the story is about… The heroine, Alexis, is a career driven woman with a past that has been blocked out of her memory — an incident too traumatic to remember. But what she doesn’t know when she bumps into the hero, Adam, is that not only does he know her from her past but he also remembers everything and he is out for revenge! The only thing he didn’t count on was falling in love with the person he wanted to hurt…
Even from the first page I was intrigued. Check out this quote:
“And that’s when I saw her. It had been almost 10 years. My heart fell a little at the thought that 10 years had actually passed. I’d always known that she was here, but I’d never sought it out. It was practically mandatory that I’d keep her distance…. I recognized her immediately. hers was a face I would know anywhere and a face I would never forget.”
It kinda begs you find out more, does it not? Clearly they had a connection but… what was it? What was it that he remembered but she didn’t? … These were the questions that kept me going.
Adam was dark, brooding, charming and utterly mysterious but… with a bit of a dangerous edge to him too. He was fuelled by a build-up of ten years of anger and hurt.
“I’d thought about her every day for the last 10 years. A part of me wanted to walk away and spend the next 10 years trying to forget her.”
Alexis on the other hang was convinced that happiness was not in her future and she threw herself into her work as much as possible instead ….
“I knew better. The fairytale ending wasn’t in the cards for me. I wouldn’t even let myself go there.”
Thankfully, this story was told in alternating POVs — given the secrecy, it was a much needed element to have both sides of the story there and it was so interesting to see how much each of their realities did not match up with the other.
I will say that there were times when his obsession over her and just some of the things he did were borderline creepy and hovered precariously on the “acceptable” line. However, I didn’t get creeper vibes off him ever so that’s what kept him in my good graces in the beginning. That and an overpowering curiosity to know why the hell he hated her so much because really seemed like a good guy deep down.
“Who’s the bad guy in this scenario,” I whispered.
“Sometimes it’s hard to tell, but I think I am.”
So… about the reason why he hated her — I obviously won’t tell you what it is but I did figure it out relatively soon and I actually think that might have made me enjoy parts of the story more by giving me a better insight into him. Because otherwise his actions really would have been creepy without context. He was a man set on revenge and intent on causing her pain while at the same time falling in love with her. Those two emotional sides of him were such polar opposites that seeing him wrestle with them almost made my head spin at times. Very “hot/cold”. But, I guess that’s what happens when you fall for the person you secretly hate.
“Forgiving was not forgetting, and I’d never been able to forget.”
In the interest of full honesty though, I will say that while I did enjoy the book, there were some parts that were just a little slow for me. It’s not that I wasn’t interested, but I did find it easy to put down in places. There were also a few things here and there that I kind of squinted my eyes at a little and went ‘hmmmm’. And I did also wish that the love scenes had been a little more “there”. It’s not something that I feel always needs to be in a story but it was just something I missed a little in this one.
That being said, I loved that the book had a very different plotline than most and I cared about the characters. I enjoyed a lot of the writing — there were fun lines in there like “I was only two Americanos into my stake out when…” and a few scenes that had me laughing right out loud.
There isn’t a cliffhanger per se because things are happy at the end, but it leaves you with a lot of questions still unanswered. Luckily though, the sequel is out now and you can read straight through! The sequel tells the conclusion to Alexis and Adam’s story 🙂
Rating: 4 stars.
** SERIES READING ORDER **