WHY I READ IT
I loved prior works by Carey Heywood and when I read the blurb, I was hooked.
WHAT I RATED IT
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
Mitch Brooks exists day to day by keeping the world around him at arms length. There is no going back to the man he once was. That man was broken in a way there’s no fixing. Any hope outside of that is nothing but wishful thinking, until he meets her.
McKenzie Williams needed an escape. The last thing she needed was a scary beautiful man beating down her door in the middle of the night. Now, if only their paths would stop crossing, she could convince herself she didn’t feel a connection to him. Life has shown her the dreams she once held dear will never come true for her.
Mitch struggles to get past the walls he’s built around himself while McKenzie works to build hers brick by brick. When the outside world exposes the vulnerabilities in his façade she abandons her own fears to stand by him. Will she be the one to save him from the darkness within him, or will he forever be chasing daylight?
This is book 3 in the Carolina Days series, but can be read as a standalone.
From the prologue, I was hooked. She opens the story on a traumatic event that you can feel is going to have a large impact on the rest of the story, but she doesn’t tell you whose point of view this is from. I love a good mystery in a story. I have a driving need to collect all of the pieces, and I want to fit them all into place where they belong. Trying to figure out whose scene this is had multiple scenarios racing through my mind that carried throughout the entire story.
I devoured this book in one sitting. I was up most of the night, and read each word and sentence carefully, looking for hidden meanings and signs as to what the author was hinting at and what was to come. As the story unfolds, I was delighted to find that the entire book was filled with such great character development, I really felt like I was a part of the story, a voyeur into the lives of Mitch and McKenzie. Mitch is a loveable recluse who tries to keep everyone at a distance. McKenzie is looking to get a fresh start on life following a rough few years. Both characters are strong and independent, trying to hide their vulnerabilities from the outside world.
There were a few twists along the way, along with bumps in the road for McKenzie and Mitch. They both had tragedies in their past, and lost parts of themselves along the way. I truly enjoyed the ride they were both on, leaning on each other and helping to pull each other out of their own emotional prisons they built up as a form of personal protection. I loved the evidence of deep research into the after effects of the traumatic experience Mitch experienced. From the in-depth descriptions Carey used, her research was very apparent.
One of my favorite characters in the story was Zeus, Mitch’s German Shepherd. Zeus was so in tune to his human, you couldn’t help but fall in love with him! (If I come home next week with a German Shepherd puppy, it’s not my fault, I swear!)