Series: Colorado High Country #3
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Source: ARC, NetGalley
A Gold Star wife alone…
Ellie Meeks promised her pilot husband that if he was killed in combat, she would live her life to the fullest. Three years later, she is still alone, raising the twins he never met. She has no interest in dating or meeting men—until one snowy night when a stranger helps her get her sick kids safely home. That stranger turns out to be a former Army Ranger and a member of the elite Rocky Mountain Search & Rescue Team. He’s also tall, rugged… and irresistibly sexy.
All it takes is one kiss…
Jesse Moretti came to Colorado to get Iraq out of his head, using the adrenaline of extreme sports and high-risk mountain rescues to keep his mind off the past. But getting involved with Ellie might be the riskiest thing he’s ever done. It’s not just their explosive chemistry. There’s something about Ellie that gets inside him, opening him to feelings he’s tried hard to ignore.
When passion ignites…
Ellie feels alive in Jesse’s arms and happier than she ever thought she’d feel again. But their relationship comes at a price for him, and soon Ellie sees that she must help Jesse fight the demons of his past to protect the love of a lifetime—and save the heart of a hero.
Ellie is a single mom of twins, trying to raise them without her husband, a soldier who died in Iraq. She meets Jesse when her car won’t start and she is stranded in the snow with her 2 kids. As it turns out, Jesse is her neighbor and knows her husband served and he has been quietly helping her out by shoveling her drive or putting her trash out. It was very sweet.
I struggle with the dead spouse trope. Its such a tightrope walk. The new person is always competing with a ghost. And often as time passes, the surviving spouse often idealizes the person they lost, remembering the best about them. Then, the new person comes in and its difficult to NOT compare them. I have read some books where the author makes it work. It can be done. Its REALLY tricky though. In this story, my problem wasn’t so much with the dead spouse, but with not feeling the hero was worthy enough for the heroine.
The story revolves around the will they/won’t they type of plot. Jesse is hesitant to enter a relationship. He isn’t sure he wants to be a father. He is dealing with so many demons still from his time in the service. Ellie really feels strongly for Jesse and realizes he is dealing with so many issues. She is willing to help him through it. This was where I struggled with the story. Ellie was raising 2 kids without her husband (because he died in Iraq) and Jesse is so wishy-washy. The chemistry is there, they would act on it, then he would back off. I totally understood his reasons and know that his struggle is very real, but it felt unfair to Ellie. She has been through so much that I wanted someone who was all in for her and her children. Jesse gets there, but the conflict of the story is all around his drama and inability to be in a relationship. It is not my favorite trope.
The setting was interesting and there are lots of unique secondary characters. The small mountain town provided lots of interesting moments with the danger and strange events that happen! Bottom line, this book wasn’t a hit for me. However, I did enjoy the author’s writing style and would be willing to pick other books that had a different trope.
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: no
- Trope: dead spouse, small town
- Triggers: View Spoiler »Ellie’s husband died in Iraq and she is a war widow which might be too difficult for some people to read « Hide Spoiler
- Series/Standalone: stand alone within a series
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »no « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes « Hide Spoiler