Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The Memory of You by Jamie Beck

Stefanie Lockwood can repair anything, except her heart—that’s still recovering.

After a brutal assault leaves Steffi with puzzling memory lapses, she returns to her coastal Connecticut hometown to rebuild her life the best way she knows how: with her hands. But starting a remodeling business with one longtime friend puts her in the middle of a rift with another. Worse, being hired by her ex-boyfriend’s mother forces her to confront old regrets.

Public defender Ryan Quinn wasn’t shocked when his wife left him, but he was floored when she abandoned their daughter. With his finances up in the air, the newly single dad returns to his childhood home in Sanctuary Sound. The last person he expects, or wants, to see working on his family house is Steffi Lockwood—his first love who shattered his heart.

Although Steffi and Ryan are different people now, dormant feelings rekindle. But when Ryan’s concern for Steffi’s mental health prompts him to dig into her past for answers, will what he learns bring them together or tear them apart for good?

Book 1
Buy Links

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~  Available with KindleUnlimited  ~

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Mary Jo☆☆☆
Triggers: Click HERE to see Mary Jo’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

This book has a good plot and storyline, but it just didn't grab me. I'm not sure if it was just the mood I was in or if it was the way the story was written.

The characters are sound, but I think Steffi's independence is, while well-written, a little over the top. I completely understand blocking out traumatic things that happen to us, but I think her inability to talk about the assault at all is a little too much. While we may not want to open up to family about the things that bother us, normally we have at least one good friend or sibling, that we open up to, even if we don't go into detail about what's wrong.

Ryan is written almost the same way. He's still holding a grudge from 10 years ago when Steffi dumped him out of the blue. To top it off, his wife has practically abandoned his daughter to pursue a relationship with another man. His anger at the entire situation is heartfelt and honestly, I feel like he should consider therapy as well.

This book has a lot of storyline to resolve and I think the ending was rushed. Granted, the epilogue helped, but I think the ending could have benefited from a few more chapters.

This is the first story in a new series by the talented Jamie Beck – her Cabot series was excellent, so I was delighted to get the chance to read this book. The premise for the series is set out early on, and we know the three main protagonists – I rather liked this as it made me think about each woman and their impact on each other. I am curious to see progress in underlying stories through the future installments. I did find the story a little slow, but it was in part building the new world of Sanctuary Sound and so, forgivable.

Steffi is a strong, independent woman, who is making a new life for herself with one of her best friends back in their home town. She is struggling with blackouts after an attack, but is determined not to get the help that we all probably believe that she needs. I did wonder if her stubbornness was come by honestly as she had mostly grown up around her father and brothers; her mother died when she was barely a teen. I liked her clear skills as a builder, and as a friend to Ryan's daughter, but her dealings with Ryan are incredibly stilted for a significant part of the book. One couldn't really just blame her, as Ryan behaved in a very rigid and unforgiving way. It was a relief when they finally started talking, although other issues in life kept interfering.

I am keen to read on and find out how things move forward for Steffi's friends.

National bestselling author Jamie Beck’s realistic and heartwarming stories have sold more than one million copies. In addition to being named a 2017 Booksellers’ Best Award finalist, her books have also hit’s Top 10 Romance Novels of 2015 and been selected as a Woman’s World Book Club pick. Critics at Kirkus, Publishers Weekly (including a starred review), and Booklist have alternatively called her work “smart,” “uplifting,” and “entertaining.” In addition to writing novels, she enjoys dancing around the kitchen while cooking, and hitting the slopes in Vermont and Utah. Above all, she is a grateful wife and mother to a very patient, supportive family.

Fans can sign up for her newsletter on her website, which includes a fun extras page with photos, videos, and playlists. She also loves interacting with everyone on Facebook

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of The Memory of You (Sanctuary Sound #1) by Jamie Beck to read and review.

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