4 of 5
ARC provided for an honest review through NetGalley.
This is a wonderful story about overcoming hard times/situations, learning to love and learning the true meaning of family. I would not call this a normal “romance” story because it is so much more. There is romance later in the story but it isn’t the main focus.
The two main characters in the beginning are Jack and Ricky. Jack is a former military man and one of three brothers who was adopted into a loving family. He learned to love, care and be a family from his adoptive parents. When his father passes away in the story, him and his brothers come together to help their mother in the family business. Ricky is a young teen boy who lives on the streets. His family is non-existent and we see the emotional and physical struggles he has to endure. It’s heart breaking to see Ricky deal with these struggles but it is also heartwarming to see his growth throughout the story.
When Ricky finds Jack working at a job site he see an opportunity to make some money by helping. Jack immediately relates to Ricky seeing him dressed in old dirty clothes and clearly living on the street. He understands what he is going through, so he extends help in the form of work and food. Jack’s understanding and compassion for Ricky runs deep because he too was in a similar situation. Being careful to not spook Ricky away, Jack tries to help as much as he can. When times get rough and Ricky is severely injured, Jack steps up to help. I absolutely love the relationship between Jack and Ricky. I felt that Jack was able to push and “discipline” in a way that made sense. Ricky reacted appropriately for his age and I was interested in his reactions to Jack and others.
Caitlyn doesn’t enter the story right away. She is Ricky’s school tutor. She is very sweet, loving and clearly cares for Ricky and her other student’s well beings. As she works with Ricky, chemistry flourishes between her and Jack. The chemistry is hot and will make you smile! It’s refreshing to see a normal attraction between two individuals. Nothing is rushed which makes their story so sweet. I also find it fun and refreshing to see the interactions and dynamics between Jack, Ricky and Caitlyn. They all have pasts that push them to understand one another.
Overall, I enjoyed this read. It was eye-opening and heartwarming. Be on the lookout for more books featuring other characters in this series!