Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Forgiven by Garrett Leigh

With each new touch, each moment of forgiveness, old hurts heal and the future they’d hoped for ten years ago becomes possible again.

High school sweethearts Mia and Luke get a second chance at love in this brand-new contemporary romance from award-winning author Garrett Leigh.

When Mia Amour returns to England to open a florist shop, all she wants to do is put her lousy ex behind her and never look back. But getting a fresh start is easier said than done when her first love, the boy who once broke her teenage heart, strolls back into her life. He’s every bit as sexy as she remembers, and the urge to melt back into his arms almost makes her forget how devastated she was when he took off without a word. Almost.

Left with no choice, Luke Daley did what he had to do, leaving town to earn enough money to save his broken family, though it just about broke him, too. But now he’s back, running his uncle’s business and trying desperately to forget about Mia, the girl he left behind all those years ago. When he runs into her in town, the shock of seeing her again brings an intense rush of emotions: love, guilt… and an overwhelming urge to find out if it’s still as amazing between them as it used to be.

It doesn’t take either of them long to give in to desire and discover the fiery passion they once shared burns hotter than ever. With each new touch, each moment of forgiveness, old hurts heal and the future they’d hoped for ten years ago becomes possible again. But their fragile connection is tested by a threat neither of them saw coming—a threat that could end their second chance before it even gets started.


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Forgiven by Garrett Leigh

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Audiobook (US)
Carina Press (Harlequin)




Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

This is a really, really good read. I have read many of Garrett Leigh's books, and they all have something very special about them – and that is they are raw, real, and do not hold back on being incredibly honest. When people are upset, they really are upset, sometimes they may even be upset for entirely the wrong reason, but they reveal it, and even revel in it. Not every action that a character takes is sensible, or forgivable, or rational. At times, they feel almost too real. This is fiction which does not gloss over the uncomfortable, or the (almost) unforgivable; it forces us to acknowledge that love can be rediscovered, even after hurt. That there may be anger, animosity, misunderstandings, but that it takes time, effort, and energy on both sides to arrive at a compromise which enables a relationship to move forward.

And that is what I always love about Leigh's books. They are not a smooth ride into the sunset. They are so much richer for the complexity of the environment around them, and the resolution of the conflict that leads to a truly meaningful ending.

So if you have not read a Garrett Leigh book before, and that sounds like the kind of writing you like, then you have a wonderful adventure ahead. This is a great place to start, as Mia and Luke's story is intense, exciting, and laden with a chemistry that even they can't fight. It makes for a great read – and I am very excited that Billy and Gus are going to get their chance in the next installment!

I’m usually a huge fan of Garrett Leigh’s writing, but this was painful. As a disclaimer, I do tend to avoid m/f romance – but I enjoy a good second-chance romance and I love Leigh’s writing enough to overlook most things. Or I thought I did.

Mia Amour arrives back in England after a messy divorce. She’s still grieving her mother and she’s avoided her brother, her hometown, and everyone she grew up with for years. She’s a bit of a mess. As she starts a new floristry business, she is blindsided by the appearance of her first love, who has also returned to town.

I really didn’t warm to Mia. She’s prickly and emotionally messy. I feel like she takes advantage of her brother and she plays emotional games with Luke. But many of Leigh’s characters are similarly messy. Leigh’s writing is at its strongest when it gets to the heart of difficult characters, but I don’t feel like we ever get to properly know Mia. And honestly, there is a point when it becomes ridiculous for a grown woman to harbour debilitating resentment towards an ex-boyfriend for decisions he made as a grieving teenager.

Luke is an easier character to warm to. He feels solid and good – but I really didn’t understand why he kept running back to Mia. Luke doesn’t deserve the head games Mia plays and I found myself losing respect for him every time he ran back to her.

Running alongside Mia and Luke’s reunion is an odd sort of stalker storyline. It’s odd because there isn’t really any escalating suspense and when it is all over, readers are still left with far too many questions about Mia’s life in France and her relationship with her ex-husband.

This feels like a very different author to the one who has written so many of my favourite stories. I don’t think the difference is totally down to the m/f romance, but I did find myself more curious about the potential relationship between Luke and Mia’s brothers than I ever was about Luke and Mia. Which probably says something about both me and the book.

Avid Reader☆☆☆
M/F Second-Chance Romance
Triggers: Click HERE to see Avid Reader’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

Mia knows that sometimes, hoping for love can blind you to who a person truly is. After a bad divorce, she heads home to buy and open a flower shop. With help from her brother, she digs in and works hard to open her shop. When she sees her old love, she can’t help but be a little blindsided.

Luke left years ago to be able to help his family. But in leaving, he had to leave Mia too. He knows that he didn’t do a fantastic job of leaving, but at the time, he didn’t know another way. Now that he has seen Mia again, he can’t help but feel a little frustrated with her view towards him, not to mention these strange things that have started to happen to him.

With Mia and Luke trying to figure out if their present can include a relationship from the past, they will have to navigate old hurts, family, and mysterious events that will either bring them closer together or tear them further apart.

This book, for me, was a little slow. I liked how protective Luke was, but it was a lot of history and I’m sorrys, which made it feel somewhat redundant.

I do hope that Mia’s brother gets his own book, as his life seems very fun and mysterious too.



Author Bio

GARRETT LEIGH is an award-winning British writer and book designer.

Garrett's debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at
Black Jazz Design, and co-owns the specialist stock site M O O N Stock Photography with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.

Connect with Garrett

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Blog  ~  Goodreads
Facebook Group: Garrett’s Den



Carina Press

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Forgiven (Forgiven #1) by Garrett Leigh to read and review.

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