Note: An advanced reader copy (ARC) was provided by the author via InkSlinger PR.
“Do you remember when I told how I'd always assumed that, when I was done living the fast life, I could just flip a switch and find the person I was meant to be with?” I kissed her again. “You flipped that switch. And not because of peas, yoga pants, or hanging out. You flipped it in ten short days because you're you and there is rough a one hundred percent chance that I'm going to fall in love with you, Rita Hartley.”
THIS BOOK! Gah! I finished this hours ago and I'm still in the throes of a major book hangover. Aly Martinez is one of my favorite go-to authors and the reason for that is on full display in this new novel of hers. Across the Horizon is a standalone contemporary romance but it's also a spin-off of Martinez's The Darkest Sunrise duet--The Darkest Sunrise and The Brightest Sunset--which was on my list of top reads for 2017. There are events in both this new release and in the duet that do overlap, but you don't necessarily have to read the duet in order to fully enjoy this new spin-off or vice-versa. But just a quick tip: do yourselves a favor and read all three books. You'll thank me for it.
Across the Horizon opens with thirty-year-old Rita Laughlin's confirmation of her husband's six-month affair with an employee. She makes quick work of making it clear she wants nothing more to do with the man she's been with for nine years. married for seven years of those years. But ending a marriage comes with complications--she's the office manager at the medical practice he co-owns with Rita's best friend and everything they own is under his name. However, all Rita wants is her car and to go back to being Rita Hartley. The one thing she doesn't need is to go falling for thirty-two-year-old celebrity chef and TV host Tanner Reese. But Tanner's smitten by the beauty blessed with wit and intelligence, and he's willing to wait until she's ready for him--for them, however long it takes.
Rita and Tanner had slow burn down pat and they made the wait oh-so-entertaining. These two had the whole back and forth banter and flirtation thing going on from the get-go, and I. Was. Smitten! They were witty and gave as good as they took, but there was never any sort of intentional hurting happening, for which I was really thankful because for all their teasing, these two simply didn't have a mean bone in their bodies. Now, having said all that, this story does have a pinch of angst to it, courtesy of their past relationship woes and, to a lesser degree, Rita's less than stellar home life growing up. Aside from Aly Martinez's stellar storytelling skills, the presence of Porter Reese and Charlotte Mills, the rest of the supporting cast, and the surprise mention of a well-loved character from another Martinez book had me quite happy, thank you very much. If I had to nitpick and quibble about something it would have to do with Tanner's ex who I felt deserved some major karma. Other than that, this awesomely wondrous read lands on my list of top favorite reads for this year, and Across the Horizon earns itself five-plus stars. ♥
Date Read: 08 December 2018
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