Review: The Last One You Loved by LJ Evans
Note: An advance reader copy (ARC) was provided by That's What She Said Publishing.
McKenna had ruined me for other women. She'd ruined me for love. But she'd also brought me the biggest gift. She'd brought me Mila.
I have read every single one of LJ Evans' published work, and while each one has proven to be noteworthy, her latest novel is my absolute favorite. The Last One You Loved is a standalone, although I sincerely hope it spawns books for the male main character's siblings, and it's a wonderfully written romance about love, family, home, and the healing nature of second chances. This is Maddox Hatley and McKenna Lloyd's story, one that began when Mads found McK when they were both eight years old, hit pause at eighteen as she left him for college in California, and have the possibility of restarting again a decade after McK finds herself returning to their hometown of Willow Creek, Tennessee. But so much has changed in all that time, because the boy who once loved her is now a man with a badge with a girl who has claimed his heart--his five-year-old daughter, Mila.
The M&Ms own every bit of my battered but still beating and wary yet hopeful heart. Neither McKenna nor Maddox were perfect main characters, but they owned their faults and strived to learn from their mistakes. Nothing came easily for these two, but I'm certainly not complaining since I have a thing for hard-earned happily-ever-afters. They faltered and stumbled, yet theirs was the sort of love that made getting back again worth it. Then there was Mila, and talk about a precocious and precious child! She was such a standout character, but then she is a Hatley after all, which is why I've got my fingers crossed that Mads' older brother, Ryder, and his younger sisters, Gemma and Sadie, get their stories told, too. The Last One You Loved is a five-plus-star must-read and LJ Evans' most remarkable work so far, and hopefully, just the first Hatley story for readers to love.
Release Date: 14 September 2022
Date Read: 10 September 2022
Learn more about LJ Evans.
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