If you have read M. Ullrich before you know she can give you the unexpected at any time. I never know which direction she will take me when reading one of her amazing books. It’s amazing that an author has that much creativity.
What the Heart Remembers Most tackles amnesia. Jax Levine is going about her days when she gets a call that her soon to be ex-wife and the mother of her son has been seriously injured. Jax’s whole world is turned upside down. Time stops and her life becomes consumed with sitting by the bedside of Gretchen Mills. These two were meant to last forever, but life, work, and raising a young child tore them apart. Now that Gretchen is injured, Jax must take the next steps to make sure her former love is taken care of. Things really get swirl, when Gretchen awakens with four years of lost memories.
You think you have a clue about how this story will play out, nope, M. Ullrich swerves and keeps you guessing to the end. There was a moment I thought I lost my mind or my Kindle went haywire. Nope, just a curveball to throw everything you thought you knew right out the dang window. This drama pulls you into Jax and Gretchen’s heartache and pain. Their marriage has crumbled and now the why is under the microscope. You feel the angst, tension, and heartache. This book is really really well written, but at times it can rip your heart out.
If you want something different, filled with emotion, this is the book for you.
3.75 out of 5 stars
Jenn Matthews’s book Hooked on You by takes you into the world of crochet with a heavy dose of romance. One of our main characters Ollie owns a craft store that offers crochet lessons. This group comes together not only to create scarves and throws but also as a support network for people that need a friendly face. The group finds that in Ollie, a 50+ year old ex-soldier that carries a ton of baggage from her time in the Middle East, her divorce and being a lesbian.
Anna, our other main character decides to find a hobby at the request of her college-aged daughter. Anna spends all of her time working as an English teacher and her kids think she needs something for herself. She decides on crochet and that takes her to Ollie. A woman she just cannot help but be smitten with.
This one was a tough one to nail down when it comes to a rating. First and foremost the book is well written. I thought that Jenn Matthews did a great job with character development and dialogue. The secondary characters add depth to the story and really make it shine. The romance felt authentic like this book could mimic a real-life love story. What holds me back a bit is that the pace was slow. I mean really, really slow and pretty heavy-handed in the crochet department. It almost felt a bit repetitive when it comes to crochet but the romance was written well enough to make up for talks of hooks and stitches.
3.5 out of 5 stars
I’m going to be 100% honest here, I had intended to pass on this book. I adored M. Ullrich’s last book, but when reading the synopsis for Life in Death, I was stuck on the fact that this book would tackle the loss of a child. I cannot imagine the pain that these characters were going to endure, and quite frankly I did not want to even go there. So, I was going to look away, but the enormous amount of positive reviews kept catching my eye, and a few people reached out to me and raved about this book. So I caved, and I read the book, and kept reading, and kept reading some more until it was finished, all in one night.
I will say this book is a gauntlet of emotions. The book begins with a window into a perfect little family, two women who love each other dearly, and their amazing little girl, who rightfully so, it the light of their lives. You know it’s’ coming, like the shark in Jaws, you can feel the foreboding, the shoe is about to drop. Abigail the daughter of Marty and Suzanne has cancer, and she will lose her battle with the awful disease. A life cut way too short, and her parent’s relationship fractured beyond belief.
This book is a roller coaster of emotions, you will feel your heart break right along Marty and Suzanne. The pain at times is palatable, tears streaming down your face as you feverishly read, totally engrossed in the story. Is it good? Oh my goodness yes, this book is very good. Life in Death takes you on a road of telling the past, mixed in with the present. You see how Marty and Suzanne found each other, and why they broke. You cheer for their road back together, knowing all the while these two will never be whole without the other. This one will stay with you long after the last chapter. A fantastic read, I do recommend waterproof mascara and tissues! My only real criticism, the ending was a touch too short.
4 out of 5 stars
I was given this book by the publisher in return for an honest review.
Life in Death
by M. Ullrich