Stay with Me by Sharla Lovelace - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

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Stay with Me by Sharla Lovelace

My Thoughts

A stirring romance full of turmoil and suspense.

3halfstars

Synopsis

staywithme-finalcoverIan was the wild boy every girl dreams of, a renegade who thrived on breaking the law and setting Savi’s body on fire. It was all fun and games and hot excitement, no strings attached, until the one day he got serious—and then disappeared without a trace.

Savi has spent the ten years since committing herself to her work, her daughter, and to not thinking about Ian—or love. Just when it’s possible she might have found the one man who can change her mind, Ian pulls into town, bringing with him all of the lust, danger, and excitement Savi remembers.

As Ian stirs up old feelings and draws Savi back into memories and passion she’s too weak to fight, he’s also digging up dirt on the man Savi is falling for, doing everything he can to prove that Duncan is not who he seems to be. And Savi, unsure whether she can trust either man, will be forced to decide between rekindling a love that never really burned out and building a new one that looks ready to catch fire.

My Review

We’re back to Copper Falls for a story rife with turmoil and betrayal, old flames and new beginnings. This is the second Sharla Lovelace book I read, and just as with Don’t Let Go (one of my favorite reads this year), it’s infused with deep emotion and longing, but at the same time it was quite different. This story introduces a love triangle, which I didn’t quite expect, and a suspenseful twist that plays to both past and present predicaments. Savi’s story takes some unpredictable turns as she works to mend a life that is suddenly in shambles, and to understand a past that had left her closed-off and distrustful.

“Ian was the wild boy every girl dreams of, a renegade who thrived on breaking the law and setting Savi’s body on fire. It was all fun  and games and hot excitement, no strings attached, until the one day he got serious  and then disappeared without a trace.”

It’s been ten years since Savanna (Savi) was left reeling, abandoned by her best friend, her lover… the man that had been fire and excitement, and most recently, a man that represented her future. Savi and Ian’s relationship had been easy, undefined and unfettered by rules and expectations. Savi was pregnant, the result of a reckless one-night stand with a guy that left her and Ian was there to pick up the pieces and in turn, love her daughter once she was born. They were a perfect chaos through the years until words of love and possibility changed everything and the truth of their emotions finally came tumbling out. But that happiness was short lived when Ian betrayed Savi in the worst possible way, abandoned their makeshift family without word or explanation.

“… no one hurt me anymore. I didn’t need that, and I didn’t need the work of romance and gush and all that fluff. Men were icing, not the cake.”

Over the years, Savi battled her anger and grief, eventually becoming distrustful of any man, never attaching herself to anyone, never getting herself excited over anyone. Until she met veternarian Dr. Duncan Spoon. She was suddenly swoony and excited and nervous for the first time in a long time.

“I got sweaty palms and heart palpitations every time I saw Duncan Spoon I hadn’t been that physically affected by a man since  ugh  since he who shall not be named left town.”

But everything changes again when Ian returns to town mysteriously, dredging up all kinds of feelings. The fire and heat she felt returns with every gaze and touch… a fire she’d still not felt with anyone else.

“Ian McMasters and I were like gasoline and fire. Chemistry I could feel from a mile away, and more addictive than any drug. Together we were explosive.”

But Ian has secrets and when he sees Savi and Duncan together, he begins to suspect Duncan of hiding secrets of his own. The story unfurls in a way I didn’t see coming and the dynamic and ending was what I struggled throughout the most.

To me, up until this point it seemed that although Savi and Ian were toxic in the past, that somehow they would be able to mend the past in a significant all-the-feels way. There were some scenes between Ian and Savi, and Ian and Gracie (Savi’s daughter), that I wanted to explore more deeply, moments that I think could have been opportunities for Lovelace to draw more emotion from the reader. Duncan, our other male protagonist seemed good, like he truly cared for Savi, but I didn’t get the fireworks feeling I expected to get. In fact, I thought the story was leading me one way, but it concluded another way. I just felt things were a bit confusing emotionally and a bit unresolved and I didn’t have a strong sense of ‘Savi belongs with this person‘, one way or the other, which made it difficult for me to get attached to any of the guys, and therefore, of course, making the ending not as powerful as I would’ve liked.

Nonetheless, the story is captivating and I had no issues reading through it, wanting to know how it all would end. I look forward to reading more Sharla Lovelace, for the feelings she incites and the stirring stories she weaves together.

“I was your everything and you left me for a lifetime.”

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