If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Friday, March 6, 2015

Review: Seaside Secrets by Melissa Foster / @TastyBookTours @Melissa_Foster

Title: Love in Bloom #24: Seaside Summers #4: Seaside Secrets
Author: Melissa Foster
Publisher: Self-Published
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
ARC Received From: Tasty Book Tours

Tony Black is the hottest surfer on the planet. He travels the world throughout the year and spends his summers on Cape Cod with his friends, at the Seaside cottages in Wellfleet, Massachusetts. He’s got his choice of women, but Amy Maples is the one he wants. Fourteen years ago she was his for an entire summer, until a devastating accident changed everything, and what they had seemed like it had never existed—at least for her.

Amy Maples is as consistent as the day is long. She’s spent summers on Cape Cod forever, she always does the right thing, and she’s spent years trying to reclaim the heart of Tony Black, the only man she’s ever loved. She’s back for a summer of fun with her friends at Seaside, only this year she’s been offered the opportunity of a lifetime thousands of miles away, and she’s decided to try one last time to reconnect with Tony. But having a relationship with Tony means dealing with her past—and dealing with her past may knock her to her knees.

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Tony and Amy made quite the pair. They loved each other from afar even though their hearts wanted to love more closely. Their pasts were entwined not just by years spent together at the Cape but by a love affair they'd kept secret from friends and family. Maybe their present would be different if their love hadn't been a secret, or if they hadn't been devastated by the loss of their baby. Heartache and their inability to communicate pushed them apart and to where they are today.

I loved the intensity between Tony and Amy. They were "I do love you but..." for most of the story until they sifted through the pieces of their past and put them together. They dealt with more than just the years of being without each other; they addressed the miscarriage. And you know what? I had to give it to Amy for admitting to Tony that she couldn't handle talking about the miscarriage. She had fourteen years of hiding that pain away, of pretending it hadn't happened, but she was honest with him when they faced it together.

There were a lot of emotional moments in this story as secrets from Tony and Amy's pasts came to light. Through each one, they learned to lean on each other, to trust each other again, and to welcome the support and understanding of their friends. It was so cool to watch Tony and Amy come together like they were supposed to. Their past would always be there but there was a future waiting for them to walk into.

At first, I wanted to say that they were only together because Amy was possibly leaving for Australia for her job. The more I read though, the more I realized that wasn't the case at all. Her job was an obstacle they would tackle, and they did it with little fanfare and amazing results, but it wasn't their reason for becoming a couple. Like I said, theirs was a love that was supposed to happen. They were meant to be together. It took a long time to get there but they did.

Part of moving forward means reconciling whatever is behind you. There is pain, tears, anger, sorrow, but there is also freedom. Tony and Amy went through all those things as individuals and as a couple. They said goodbye to a past they'd never forget and hello to the promise of a bright and glorious future together. Ms. Foster gave Tony and Amy an ending that was fourteen years in the making, but the journey she took them on to get there... Man, that made the ending so worth reading.

Foster is an award-winning, International bestselling author. Her books have been recommended by USA Today's book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, the World Literary CafĂ©. When she's not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa is also a community builder for the Alliance for Independent Authors. She has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

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