Built to Last is a sweet contemporary standalone from Elisabeth Grace. This book was charming and I really enjoyed the second chance at love for Scarlett and Luke. I loved the characters here and the town of Saltwater Springs was adorable. If you are a fan of small town contemporary romance stories and second chances, this is one you are going to want to check out!
Scarlett Devereaux and Luke Garrity were in love as teenagers and planned their life together. But one night changed everything, and Scarlett left town without ever looking back or letting Luke know why she left. Now ten years later, her life is a mess and she will do whatever it takes to turn things around. Back in Saltwater Springs, Scarlett is determined to open up her own bakery and when her first contractor scams her she is desperate to find another. But when the only option left turns out to be none other than her first love Luke, she knows that things are bound to be anything but easy. Luke wants answers for what happened years ago, but more than anything what he wants is to make Scarlett his once and for all. But can they have a chance at a future when the reason Scarlett left is big enough to destroy everything between them?
I liked Luke a lot. Scarlett was likable as well, but I did have issues with her. While I did have some mixed feelings here though, Scarlett and Luke were good together. It was so easy to see the love they had for one another. Time and distance had done nothing to lessen their connection, and the chemistry between them was very strong. These two were clearly meant for one another, and I hated that they had spent so long apart when it was obvious they were supposed to be together. Luke was a really good guy, and I loved how hard of a worker he was. He had made something of himself when a lot of other people would have just accepted the circumstances they had been born into. He was also great with his family, and had this really sweet side to him. Scarlett had been through a lot and I really felt for her. She had allowed her parents to push her into a life that she didn't want, and left her with a mess to clean up after they passed. The one thing I didn't like when it came to Scarlett though was the fact that she was so against telling Luke the truth. She spent almost this entire book knowing that she still loved him and admitting that she needed to tell him the truth, and yet she just kept putting it off while trying to convince him that they just couldn't be together. I felt like with ten years already gone, she should have been able to admit the truth and communicate like an adult. The fact that she couldn't made her appear a bit weak and childish to me. Especially considering that she wouldn't let her friend even bring Luke up during the ten years she was gone, yet she was mad at the same friend in the present for never having told her certain things that Luke had going on in his life. I wanted to shake her a few times and tell her to grow up.
Overall, this was a good book that I enjoyed reading. It wasn't one that really broke any new ground or changed my life, but I did like it and it was a sweet story. I have to say that Scarlett's big secret wasn't one that shocked me, and though I didn't know all the specifics ahead of time, it was one that I had seen coming from a mile away. I knew what had made her run, and it was predictable. I was so mad at her for not talking to Luke, and I really felt like she was to blame for the years they spent apart. Luckily I did like her and I was glad that Luke was as good of a guy as he was and that he was able to move forward with her after everything that she had done. I think that this book is a good one if you are looking for something sweet and enjoyable, and like the contemporary genre. I will read more from Elisabeth Grace in the future, and I liked her writing style a lot. It was really easy to get into the story here, and I look forward to seeing what she will come up with in the future, especially if it is set in this sweet little town.
**ARC Provided by Inkslinger PR**