Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Where the Heart Lies Review
Where the Heart Lies by Michelle Garren Flye
All widowed Alicia Galloway has left of her war-hero husband are the flag that draped his coffin and his final wishes: to move to his hometown, take over the family bookstore and enjoy a simple, quiet life with their two small children. When she arrives, her husband's best friend makes that new life anything but simple. How can she be so drawn to Liam Addison?
Liam only intended to help Alicia get settled. But one unexpected kiss awakens his long-held forbidden feelings. Soon, the town busybodies swoop in to warn Alicia away from him. Because no matter the man he's become, he'll never live down his reputation as town troublemaker and wolfish womanizer.
No one wants the war hero's sweet widow and the supposedly former bad boy together. But the more everyone tries to keep them apart, the closer he and Alicia get. And the more determined Liam is to prove he's a changed man. Will it be enough to convince Alicia to let a new love in her life?
I have to start off by apologizing... normally, I wouldn't read and review a book until closer to the release date... but I just couldn't hold off with this one. The description caught my attention and even though I tried to find something else to read until at least the beginning of July, I just couldn't get this one out of my mind. I mean, come on... an American Heroes widow catches the eye of the play boy best friend? To me, it screamed drama... but in all reality I got so much more from this book... mostly from the characters... they, in more ways than one, captured my heart and sucked me so deep into this story that I didn't want to put the book down and ended up reading it in about 4 hours.
Alicia is one of those characters that no matter how much I tried, there would have been no way I wouldn't have been able to fall in love with her. She had one of the biggest hearts that was so filled with love and forgiveness that she made me want to take a step back and evaluate myself as a person... make me want to become a better woman... a better wife... a better mother.... a better friend... she was absolutely beautiful. The strength she has was astounding... Here this woman has just lost the love of her life and yet continues to face challenge after challenge, struggle after struggle, and the most devastating was her having to face more loss.... and yet here she continues to put one foot in front of the other and face all these things head on, the best way she knows how. She meets a lot of new friends but the one person she feels she can most depend on is her husbands best friend... Liam... even though the entire town is pretty much against her even being his friend.
Liam is just... yeah, all I can come up with is a complete charmer. He's got this vibe about him that just makes you want to be around him, he's sweet and he shows his compassion in his eyes. But the problem is he has got feelings for Alicia that he feels guilty over... because when it comes down to it, he just wanted to let her know he was there for her if she needed him yet he finds himself seeking her out, hoping she will need him... There is a history between him and Ty and one that Liam feels extremely guilty over... I really felt for him because he truly believed that him pursuing Alicia was wrong, that he didn't deserve her, and when it came down to it... she is Ty's wife... even though his feelings for Alicia began years before and he would continue to do anything she needed him to do... he just couldn't get over the guilty feelings and see if he could possibly find his happily ever after with this woman who has come to mean more to him then he ever could have imagined. Plus it doesn't help that the entire town is out to make him look like this horrible guy who is responsible for the decisions that lead Ty to becoming a Marine and essentially losing his life.
Then there is Penny... I have to voice my thoughts on Penny, when normally I would just let it go and let my fellow book lovers come to their own conclusion on Alicia's new BFF. There was something about her that just rubbed me the wrong way right from the beginning... she seemed to over eager, too up in Alicia's business, and way to focused on keeping Liam and Alicia away from each other. It all bothered me to the point that when everything, that I had already suspected, came out in the open... I sat there and stared at E. Luke with my jaw dropped and a goofy expression on my face because I just could not believe how easily Alicia forgave her. Granted it really wasn't up to Alicia to forgive her, but then again, in a way it kind of was. Penny is a very selfish woman, who tries to come off as this great friend who is just looking out for Alicia, but when it came down to it, she was just looking out for herself... because the secrets she was keeping, would not only hurt a lot of people, but would possibly destroy her relationships with those people she would be hurting.
So obviously against the advice of Penny, and the numerous stink eyes and quick opinions Alicia would receive from certain town residents... Liam and Alicia form a very special bond. At first nothing comes of it, other than two people who genuinely care for each other.. but are fighting their feelings in secret... until an unexpected first kiss... and then unexpected second kiss. Their relationship was sweet but at the same time it was sad to watch both of them fight the guilt they had over Ty, Alicia's husband. But eventually they both got to the point where they wanted to explore what could develop between them because fighting their feelings was getting to be too hard... especially considering neither of them could go a minute without thinking of the other.
Where the Heart Lies by Michelle Garren Flye was an absolutely amazing book. Granted there were a few times where I was a little confused on the POV because it switched a little too quickly but it didn't take long to figure out whose thoughts I was reading... and since I'm being completely honest here the story itself made me completely look over the abrupt POV changes. It's been a while since I've read a book that sucked me in as quickly and as deeply as Where the Heart Lies did and I have to say that I look forward to reading more by Michelle... especially if her other books are half as good as this one. I love books where I can connect with characters and I definitely connected with these characters to the point where I was sad to see their story come to end.