When I reviewed the previous novel in this series, I offered up a little caution to those readers who dislike cliff-hangers, while confessing that I’m generally content to wait and find out what happens next, no matter how perilous the situation our characters are left in on the last page. So, did this next novel drag our characters back from the edge? Read on and find out.
This is definitely a book where you need to have read the first novel to properly appreciate what’s going on and who these people are. On the other hand, I’m not convinced that it’s necessary to have read the bridging short story as well, although as it retails for less than a dollar, if not still available free, then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get that one on your reader as well.
The novel itself picks up around three weeks after the previous one left off. Tenley is being virtually held prisoner ‘for her own good’ by the brother of her deceased fiancé, and Hayden is sinking into depression and extreme obsessive-compulsive tidiness in his despair at losing her. Fortunately Tenley is stronger now than she was the previous year when her grief at the deaths of her fiancé, family, and friends nearly destroyed her, and she works to find a way out of the legal mess her almost brother-in-law has landed her in with his attempts to seize her inheritance. Then, of course, she must make her way back to Chicago and all the friends she’s made there, even if she’s still convinced that Hayden would be better off without her.
I must admit that I find this a book of two halves, the first half being a little too angsty for me. However, the second half of the book, in which Tenley and Hayden start to unravel the background to the murder of Hayden’s parents while Tenley learns much more both about what made Hayden the way he is and discovers almost as much about the true character of her deceased fiancé, I find far more enthralling. All the other antagonists from the previous novel are back and determined to force Tenley and Hayden apart just as they’re getting back together, but fortunately Tenley and Hayden have good friends around them, not to mention Hayden’s aunt and uncle and Tenley’s adorable stray kitten.
We also see more of Tenley’s sleazy academic adviser and get to cheer Hayden on as he seeks to outwit the guy’s machinations and downright unprofessional behaviour to more students than just Tenley. I’d have liked a little more focus on Tenley’s studies, and maybe some appreciation of just how much fun she could get out of her new piercing (acquired in the course of this novel). Hopefully we’ll get a third novel-length story at some point to answer my questions on both those counts.
A book of two halves? Certainly, but I suspect the first half will satisfy those who like angst more than I do, and the second ought to satisfy the rest of the readership of the first book as much as it does me.
In this follow-up to Clipped Wings, the emotional love story continues between Hayden and Tenley; two young people who desperately want to love and be loved but are afraid to completely let go of their pasts.
In the wake of losing Tenley Page, tattooist Hayden Stryker’s tumultuous past is haunting him. Plagued by nightmares about the murder of his parents, Hayden reaches out again to Tenley. Having run from the man she doesn’t believe she deserves, Tenley finally lays her guilt to rest. Despite their intense physical attraction, Hayden and Tenley struggle to repair their fragile emotional connection. As Hayden gets closer to the truth, he must find a way to reconcile his guilt over his parents’ death in order to keep the woman who finally cracked his armor, and found her way into his heart.
No excerpt available.
Other books in this series: