Evin is a single dad to six-month-old Micah, so when he burns his hand baking teething biscuits, Evin has no choice but to take Micah with him to the ER. Of course, the very last person he expects to run into his his ex. Dr. Ben Perez is now a ER doctor in Portland. They haven’t see each other in six years, and Evin’s heart is still broken by Ben walking away, even if he found someone in the meantime to build a life and start a family with. Daniel was taken from him too soon, and Evin’s only focus is on his son.
The moment Ben sees Evin again, all his old feelings come crashing back. Not that Evin has ever been far from his mind. Ben walked away because he thought he had to, but he’s never stopped loving Evin. And Ben is fully aware he’s got some work to do if he can ever get Evin’s trust back. But he just wants to help Evin.
The two agree to try being friends again, and then their relationship moves to more. But just as they are getting started, an event sends Evin spiraling, remembering that the world is a dangerous place. But Ben is not willing to give up what they’ve been building, and he’s determined to show Evin that his trust is not misplaced.
Alicia Nordwell is a new to me author, so when looking for a book for this week’s challenge, I immediately grabbed this one up. I’m not usually one for kids in my romance, but a baby is a different story. And reunited lovers are one trope that always gets me. So I was happy to take a chance on this book and this author. And I’m glad I did.
Right off the bat, we can see that Evin is still grieving the loss of his partner. But we also see that even though he was happy and looking forward to his future, it wasn’t the same kind of love he had with Ben. I really liked that the author made the distinction without ever making Evin’s relationship with Daniel seem cheap or unimportant. I liked watching Evin work through his own feelings. I liked that he wasn’t going to just accept Ben back into his life without explanation. And I really liked that Ben knew he had a lot to make up for, and was willing to put in the work.
The way these guys meet again is creative, and I thought that their first few encounters really grounded the story in reality. As things move along, it gets a little predictable, but not in a bad way. Ultimately, they get to the place we all know they’ve been heading. And while it felt real, I would have liked a little more time and development here. The end seemed to rush a bit, and I was looking for a bit more from them and from the story.
But it was a really nice book, and Evin and Ben were great characters. There were few secondary characters, and that really lent itself to the story. Evin’s best friend was the perfect kind of best friend we all want to have. And baby Micah was the perfect teething six-month old. All in all, there wasn’t a lot of new ground covered in this story, but the author handled it well. With smooth descriptive prose, and shining moments of wonderfulness, I really enjoyed Nordwell’s style. This is a good book, and I’ll definitely be looking for other works by the author.
This review is part of our Reading Challenge Month for New to Me Author Week! Leave a relevant comment below and you will be entered to win a fabulous prize from Riptide Publishing. One winner will win a set of Advanced Review Copies before the books are released (or if it is a non-U.S. winner, an electronic copy of the books upon release). Commenters will also be entered to win our amazing grand prize sponsored by Dreamspinner Press (a loaded Kindle fire filled with DSP books!). You can get more information on our Challenge Month here, and more details on New to Me Author Week here. And be sure to check out our prize post for more details about the awesome prizes!