Liz Atwater’s happily ever after was torn from her the instant her husband, Jack, was murdered. She is forced to pick up the shattered pieces of her life and raise her three young sons alone.
Reynold Carter’s picture perfect Hollywood life ended the moment the paparazzi got hold of his girlfriend’s cheating scandal. As he watches his life unfold in the tabloids, he comes to a crossroads in his career and his purpose.
When Reynolds takes on the challenge of a new project, his world collides with that of Liz. Neither of them expected their professional relationship to evolve into friendship, or love.
But life is never simple.
Faced with complications from family, friends, and colleagues, Liz and Reynolds are left to decide whether two people from such different worlds can find happiness together.
Can they get past the pain, fear, and guilt and risk their hearts to love again?
Not every love story is just a happy ending. Some completely change your life.
First things first, reading the synopsis, I know that I am going to need a box of tissues ready and waiting. Second, after reading this beautifully written book, I went on Facebook and wrote the following status “I just finished an NA ARC that I really enjoyed. I may or may have not shed a tear or two. I like warm and fuzzy too besides the smut.” Yes, I love reading my smut, but every so often, I love reading a feel good or gut wrenching book. A book that will make me think afterwards. This book did it for me in spades.
Just from the Prologue, I was already gutted. This book has alternating POVs. Liz Atwater, loving wife and mother of three beautiful boys. Then Reynolds Carter, mega movie star who is so over Hollywood and the fake people and especially his moronic ex-girlfriend Kiera.
Jack Atwater was Elizabeth’s husband and the love of her life. A love that was so viciously taken from her and her boys. Jack was so loved not only by his family, but his colleagues. He was a big champion in trying to change legislator when it came to institutions for the disabled. How will Liz survive without Jack? Her wonderful best friend Cindy, whom I loved, loves to talk and has not filter whatsoever. Although, Cindy is wondering how can she help her BFF when Liz is always the one for all others?
Reynolds Carter. Hollywood’s heartthrob. Sexy, dark hair, blue eyes and totally hot. Again, after suffering heartache by way of his twatwaffle of a girlfriend Kiera, he goes back to Pennsylvania to get away from all things Kiera and Hollywood. After moping around and a very heartfelt conversation with his parents, he needed and wanted a change. After watching the news one night, Reynolds stumbles upon the new legislator that Jack Atwater was fighting for before he died. When Reynolds learned of his horrific murder, he knew what his new passion was going to be. Writing Jack Atwater’s story for the big screen.
Reynolds makes a trip to Baltimore to meet with Liz and discuss his plans on writing a screenplay on Jack’s fight to closing institutions. At first, Liz was apprehensive, but the more she thought about it, she wanted Jack’s hard work to get exposure. This poignant interaction between Reynolds and Liz is probably what made her really think hard about having Jack’s story out there: “I want a chance to do something good. I want to tell a story that means something and helps people. I need this opportunity right now. I want to take control of my life, and I thought you might too.”
You will see their friendship blossoming, yet although she is attracted to Reynolds, in her heart and mind, she’s not ready to let go of her Jack. She has resigned herself to be a widow and a single mom to her three boys. Of course, her boys come to liking Reynolds, except of her oldest son Griffin.
Throughout the months spent writing the screenplay, Reynolds cannot help but fall in love with Liz. Her giving nature, how she is so loved by her friends and family, her strength through this unimaginable tragedy, Reynolds falls hard. Oh man this part when Reynolds confesses to Liz, really made me fall in love with Reynolds. “I’m falling in love with you. … I also know you’re not ready. I get it.” Can he be anymore perfect?
Yet, Liz is at a crossroads. Their little interactions or subtle touches and the fact that Reynolds is so damn attractive, finds Liz in a bit of a quandary. This is what Liz tells her BFF Cindy regarding Reynolds: “I feel drunk around him. Wrecked. Intoxicated by his presence. I can’t think straight and everything is happening so fast. I need to clear my head.” Cindy, God I loved her, this was her response: “You can’t sober up around a man like Reynolds. And why would you want to? Enjoy this.”
Eventually does give her heart to Reynolds. Of course, there are some obstacles dating Sexiest Man Alive, but through that little drama. Liz and Reynolds made it work. Here’s a lasting quote during her interview with a magazine after hers and Reynolds relationship finally came out in the open: “When my husband died, I was sure my heart was so damaged, it would never love again. Reynolds showed me that the power of love is both inescapable and infinite. Yeah, that right there, I was bawling my pretty little eyes out.
This is a must read. You heart will break at times, but heal at the end. I loved how the author kept me captivated throughout. Ms. Ward’s writing flew fluidly throughout my IPad. I will leave you with one last quote that put it all into perspective:
“The idea is that once you really love someone, and I mean the kind of love that fills you up from head to toe, it never leaves you. A love like that surrounds you, always. Time, distance, and even death can’t end it. That love is Past Heaven.”
*An ARC was received for an honest review.
LAURA WARD is the author of PAST HEAVEN and the New Adult novel, NOT YET. She lives in Maryland with her loud and very loving three children and husband. Laura married her college sweetheart and is endlessly grateful for the support he has given her through all their years together, and especially toward her goal of writing books. When not picking up toy trucks, driving to lacrosse practice, or checking spelling homework, Laura is writing or reading romance novels.
Contact Laura at:
Twitter — @laurarosnerward
Instagram — _Laura_Ward
Email — firstname.lastname@example.org