Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Book Review: Everything We Keep and Everything We Left Behind by Kerry Lonsdale

Goodreads Summaries:
Everything We Keep: A luminous debut with unexpected twists, Everything We Keep explores the devastation of loss, the euphoria of finding love again, and the pulse-racing repercussions of discovering the truth about the ones we hold dear and the lengths they will go to protect us.

Sous chef Aimee Tierney has the perfect recipe for the perfect life: marry her childhood sweetheart, raise a family, and buy out her parents’ restaurant. But when her fiancé, James Donato, vanishes in a boating accident, her well-baked future is swept out to sea. Instead of walking down the aisle on their wedding day, Aimee is at James’s funeral—a funeral that leaves her more unsettled than at peace.

As Aimee struggles to reconstruct her life, she delves deeper into James’s
disappearance. What she uncovers is an ocean of secrets that make her question everything about the life they built together. And just below the surface is a truth that may set Aimee free…or shatter her forever.
Everything We Left Behind: Two months before his wedding, financial executive James Donato chased his trade-laundering brother Phil to Mexico, only to be lost at sea and presumed dead. Six and a half years later, he emerges from a dissociative fugue state to find he’s been living in Oaxaca as artist Carlos Dominguez, widower and father of two sons, with his sister-in-law Natalya Hayes, a retired professional surfer, helping to keep his life afloat. But his fiancée, Aimee Tierney, the love of his life, has moved on. She’s married and has a child of her own.

Devastated, James and his sons return to California. But Phil is scheduled for release from prison, and he’s determined to find James, who witnessed something in Mexico that could land Phil back in confinement. Under mounting family pressure, James flees with his sons to Kauai, seeking refuge with Natalya. As James begins to unravel the mystery of his fractured identity, danger is never far behind, and Natalya may be the only person he can trust.
My Thoughts:
“On our wedding day, my fiance, James, arrived at the church in a casket.”

When I opened the book and read this very first sentence, I was hooked. What an amazing introduction. Dramatic, mysterious, just enough there to keep you reading to find out more. What happened to James? Who was this woman, what will happen to her now? I had so many questions already, and I had only read one sentence!

This book was an amazing journey, one I didn’t expect, to be honest. Throughout the book, new questions would arise, as old ones found answers. Always, always, I would ask myself, what would I do, if I were Aimee? I absolutely loved this book, and when I got to the end, I was so glad that Lake Union had sent me the second book in the series. I had to know immediately what happened next! I was so happy that I didn’t need to wait longer than it took me to put the first book down, and pull the second out of my nightstand drawer.

Everything We Left Behind didn’t disappoint either. Picking up right where Everything we Keep left off, on a massive cliffhanger, I kept reading about these characters. Rooting for them, sometimes even a little teary eyed. I read the second book a little slower, not as frenzied to get to the end, wanting to understand the characters a little more. It was a little more complex than the first, which was needed. The book grew where it needed to, and I enjoyed the slower pace just as much as I had enjoyed reading the first book as fast as I could.

I really enjoyed these two books, and recommend them to contemporary readers everywhere! It is a beautiful story of loss, renewal, and starting over, with a little crazy thrown into the mix. And of course, there is Ian. He deserves his very own mention, in my opinion. My only suggestion is to have the second book readily available for when you finish the first!

I received these books from Lake Union Publishing in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love hearing from people, don't be shy! I would love to hear what you think! I always reply back, although it takes me a bit longer these days due to the little guy.