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Sunday, August 24, 2014

ARC Review: Hopeful by Louise Bay

Hopeful is the first book that I have ever read by Louise Bay, but this book is actually a standalone sequel to her book Faithful. I really love second chance love stories, so I couldn't wait to read this one. I ended up enjoying it a lot, and there were only a few things that kept this one from being a five star read for me. But I was really invested in the story right from the start and didn't want to put it down because I had to know what would happen for Joel and Ava. I can't wait to go back and read Faithful as well as the next book in this series.

Ava lost the love of her life eight years ago, and has had trouble moving on ever since. She still has her great group of friends as well as a successful career, but her friends just can't understand why she doesn't date. When she finds out that her ex will be returning to town, she decides that it is time to get over him once and for all. But she quickly realizes that it isn't fair to those that she would date when her heart still belongs to someone else. The draw between Joel and Ava is still there after all these years, but there is more than just the time apart that stands in their way. Can Ava convince Joel that things will be different this time and that their second chance is worth the risk?

I really liked Joel. He was great both in the past and the present. I thought that he was sweet and kind, and also really sexy. He was really adorable with Ava, and I loved how simple things started off between them. It was great to see them go from being sort of friends and study buddies to more between them. But Joel was amazing, and he really wanted to show Ava that things between them were more than just physical. I loved that he took it slow and showed her what she meant to him. I thought that Ava's actions didn't really make sense in the past. I didn't understand her reluctance to be honest with her friends and explain what was going on. There was no reason that I could see for her to keep so many things a secret and it drove me nuts. But I liked Ava from the present and it was good to see her finally figure things out and do what she should have done all along. I was glad that Joel made her earn it and didn't just go along with what she was saying. I felt like she needed to take action, and it was good to finally see that happen. I thought that Joel and Ava had great chemistry and that was clear from the start.

My main reason for this one being only four stars instead of five was that I didn't really care for the back and forth between past and present. While that is common in stories, it felt unnecessary in this one. I wish things would have been done differently, and I hated the back and forth switch. I kept getting confused which was which and I just felt it wasn't executed properly most of the time. I also felt like the big blowout for their breakup was sort of anticlimactic after it was finally revealed what had happened in the past. Because of the format I was expecting something more, and found it to be a let down. I did really like Ava and Joel's connection though, and I was interested enough that I didn't want to stop reading until I had finished. I just personally wished for a different format as to how everything was laid out for the reader. I will definitely read more from Louise Bay in the future though and look forward to getting more of this group of characters. I would recommend giving this book a shot if you are looking for a second chance love story.

**ARC Provided by Inkslinger PR**

Purchase: | Amazon | B&N |


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