book, Book Review

A Love Like Ours, by Becky Wade

About the Book:
Author: Becky Wade
Publisher: Bethany House
Source: Author Provided
Publication Date: 2015
Find the Review elsewhere:
Amazon ǀ Blogger ǀ Goodreads ǀ Novel Crossing
Find the Book Elsewhere:
Amazon ǀ Barnes & Noble ǀ Goodreads
Series: Porter Family, book 3
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary
Rating: 5 out of 5

Synopsis: Former Marine Jake Porter has far deeper scars than the one that marks his face. He struggles with symptoms of PTSD, lives a solitary life, and avoids relationships.
When Lyndie James, Jake’s childhood best friend, lands back in Holley, Texas, Jake cautiously hires her to exercise his Thoroughbreds. Lyndie is tender-hearted, fiercely determined, and afraid of nothing, just like she was as a child. Jake pairs her with Silver Leaf, a horse full of promise but lacking in results, hoping she can solve the mystery of the stallion’s reluctance to run.

Though Jake and Lyndie have grown into very different adults, the bond that existed during their childhood still ties them together. Against Jake’s will, Lyndie’s sparkling, optimistic personality begins to tear down the walls he’s built around his heart. A glimmer of the hope he’d thought he’d lost returns, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend? – Goodreads

REVIEW: Becky is one of the best contemporary authors whose books consistently delight. Consider this novel another affirmative mark towards another reason why I can say that without reservation. With each of her novels, Becky has stretched the emotional boundaries and though I do have a favorite of her four-book career, I love each of them for their own attributes and quality of the stories (the balance of humor against the heart tugging moments, which I’ll take about later is always in perfect sync with her characters) is unparalleled. This novel is about youngest brother, Jake Porter and the first love he (let’s be honest) never forgot. Of the three Porter brothers, I do believe Jake’s story was universally the most anticipated. He was the most repressed of the three, the least willing to open up and share his thoughts, fears or the horrible experiences he encountered. In this story, under a skillful hand, Becky prods those wounds, opening them up to be realistic, genuine and still the book manages to bring us back to the beauty that is the hero’s scars – a reminder of what he’s been through, yes, but also a sign of the plans God has for him.

Jake’s greatest “disability” isn’t the lingering scars of his physical pain, rather they are the memories, the horrors that he cannot shake. His story does a good job making sure that isn’t lost in the shuffle. His conversion also feels very organic and normal to the surroundings the book set up. Jake might be closed off in comparison to the witty, romantic, swoon-y Porter men his brothers are, but I’m telling you… he’s not at all hard to fall for. Likewise, Lyndie is a delight. Her ray of sunshine persona next to Jake’s is the perfect fold. She’s not afraid of him and is willing to take chances. I loved that she takes a chance on him knowing he’s not in the same place that she is (spiritually) and she never gives up on him. There are a lot of moving parts to this love story (first love, scarred mind, overprotectiveness) and I loved it. Between the fierce loyalty Lydia has to Jake and his gentlemanly protective nature, they’re two people – both as a couple and as individuals – who are worth meeting.

Also playing a role in this novel is the return of Amber (the single mother from Undeniably Yours). Usually I’m not a fan of the two-love story format, but Amber’s sections are just enough of a “tease” that I didn’t mind. It never felt as if her story was taking away from the main romance or as if anyone was being cheated. Instead we watch Amber grow up in some sense and meet a nice, responsible (not to mention, a fireman) man who she is (mentally) healthy enough to pursue a relationship with. A Love Like Ours is chocked-full of indescribable charms, laughs, tears and good old-fashion Texas family values. It will tug at your heartstrings. It’s a compelling novel not just because of its characters, but because it’s bound to make you all the more grateful to those who serve our country. The book also doesn’t wrap everything with a pretty bow. The characters may have been humbled and experienced an emotional breakthrough, and through that, they realize they still aren’t “whole.” Rather, they have more work to do. Jake might fear for what his future looks like. I do not. The story ends in a very hopeful, bright place. Sometimes that’s the most rewarding story an author can gift her readers. A Love Like Ours is that and so much more. ♥

Coming Next from Becky Wade: “I have so much fun writing feisty heroines and the youngest Porter sibling is the feistiest heroine I’ve written yet. Dru carries a gun, drives a motorcycle, and can take men down with her jujitsu moves. She’s an executive protection agent who’s been hired to guard a famous NFL player named Gray Fowler from the stalker who’s been sending him death threats. I’ve had a great time taking the bodyguard romance premise and flipping it so that the heroine’s the bodyguard.

Gray’s indignant when he meets Dru. He’s twice her size, older than she is, and a ten year veteran of professional football. He figures he can guard himself far better than a slim, twenty-something woman can. Little does he know . . .” – Becky Wade on her fourth (untitled) and final Porter Family novel, Christian Manifesto Interview  

Sincere thanks to the author, Becky Wade (and Bethany House) for providing a complimentary copy of this book for reviewing purposes.

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