I have to admit that I went into this book completely blind. Other than knowing (hoping?) that it was a contemporary, I didn’t know the premise. The cover alone hooked. I usually prefer to not know a lot about a book before starting because I want to be able to make my own conclusions… I’m here to say this did not let me down. It was delightful, charming, and adorable. I was raised in a small pothole of a town in the middle of nowhere and maybe that is why I felt such a connection to this story. Two small town country kids trying to make it big while not losing who they are. How could I not get behind a book like that?
There was so, so much about this story that I adored – the setting, the characters, the plot, the pacing, nearly everything. It made me wish there were more contemporary stories around country music (but that’s just my country upbringing talking…) This felt like a character driven story because both, Clay and Annie, were dealing with huge ghosts from their pasts, both needing the other to help heal past traumas. They were both deeply flawed and yet wonderfully complex. I found myself admiring Annie’s strength and determination to not fall victim to the tragic events of her parents. She had so much grit that it almost felt inspiring. Clay was just a good ol’ southern boy that made me want to dig out my cowboy boots and hunt for my own cowboy. He had his own sorted past, don’t let think he was all innocent for one single moment. They were people I wish I could have been friends with in real life. I enjoyed watching them grow and slowly begin to face their demons as the story progressed while also growing towards each other. While they are just alright as individual characters, they really and truly were better together.
The overall story of how these two found each other and then found themselves was brilliantly done. I enjoyed how music played a major role in that. I do believe music has the power to help heal so that felt like an added bonus. While this was a quick read, it is not one I will forget anytime soon. GAH, I’m struggling to write a proper review because I enjoyed this so much! I’m also trying really hard to not give anything away so you can sense my stammering, I’m sure.
Bottom line – this was as amazing as I had hoped it would be. If you have been on the fence about it, I urge you to give it a chance. I was thrilled with what I read and will be reading whatever else this author chooses to write.