Review: The Way Back Home by Carmen Jenner


Note: This ARC was provided by the author via Give Me Books Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

The Way Back Home is my third Carmen Jenner read, after Finding North and Harley & Rose, and as always, this author has given me a story with heart and heat and two characters that I could easily get behind and cheer on to their happily-ever-after. A quick perusal on Goodreads has clued me in that the female main character was a peripheral character in another of the author's previous releases, Toward the Sound of Chaos, but even though I have yet to read that particular title, I was still able to wholly appreciate and enjoy this latest release, so yes, it does quite well as a standalone. If you've never read anything by Jenner, this second chance romance between a Marine who's lost a great deal and a woman who wants to help him find himself again works as your introduction.

August Cotton has returned to his hometown of Magnolia Springs, not because he wants to but because fate and circumstances have left him with no other choice. The sudden loss of his parents have made left him as the sole guardian of his very young sister. Add that dual loss to everything else that's been taken away from him--the beloved IED detection dog who never failed him and his left leg--and the former Marine's less than sunny outlook on life and grumpy personality are understandable. Except Olivia Anders doesn't want to simply accept things as they are. She's set her mind to pairing the broken veteran with a broken dog, which is what Paws for Cause is all about. August is trained to be prepared for anything, but nothing could have prepared him for someone like Olivia.

This was both a heartrending and a heartwarming story. August has lost so much and your heart can't help but break for him. He's clearly still trying to find his footing, especially since he's in a situation he had never envisioned for himself. I think Olivia was the perfect counterbalance for someone like him. She was exactly what he needed without realizing that he had that particular need. The expected angst is there, but the book didn't feel overly heavy, which I must confess was a surprise but one that I applaud because I love it when an author manages to give me something different and it makes the story even better. The Way Back Home is a story about love, hope, and family and how life can turn out to be better than expected once you give it--and yourself--a chance. Five stars. ♥

Release Date: 28 May 2017

Date Read: 28 May 2017

Learn more about Carmen Jenner.

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