3.5 stars, rounding up to 4.
I really did enjoy this but it had the potential to be so much more than it was. It could have been deeply emotional. I suppose Tessa Dare writes fun more than she writes emotional gut punches, so I shouldn’t be surprised. I just found myself wanting more from it.
Before even starting the book I imagined those letters from Maddie had meant more to Logan than he’d let on. I could just imagine him through years of cold, hard war, waiting for each of her letters. Looking forward to them. Coming to trust in them. And then the last one killing him off. The sudden end to the only thing bright in his life. How crushing it would be to know the letters would come no more and that he couldn’t do anything about it because their relationship wasn’t real.
Maddie had started this lie as a sixteen year old girl and she thought herself foolish and fanciful. And while Logan seemed to resent that in many ways, he was just as foolish and fanciful as her. Because he too began to believe the lie. To dream that it could be real. To fabricate a life that could be instead of the one that was, all because of her letters. He was just as silly as her, no matter how much he wanted to deny it.
Well, that’s what I wanted the book to be. It was almost that. It felt like being on the edge of an emotional cliff and never falling off of it. And I wanted to fall so badly.
It simply lacked emotionally revealing moments between the hero and heroine. And that’s what I think really makes a romance…for me anyway. Those moments of discovery where they’re learning and understanding each other. Those pieces of another human being that reach out an tug at your heart. Their vulnerabilities. Their truths. The things that make them special. What makes them right for each other. They have to see these things. Find them and understand them before they can fall in love. That’s what truly makes a good romance.
There was a little of that and the other pieces above. It hinted at it. Just not baldly enough. I wanted it to be clearer, stronger, more intense.
Maybe it’s not fair to review a book on what I wanted it to be as opposed to what it actually was. I’m not sure. I guess I just had high hopes. Like buying a salted caramel, ganache ice cream and finding out it just tastes like chocolate. Very good chocolate, but chocolate nonetheless.