4.5 stars out of 5.
I really enjoyed this book. It's one of just a few straight contemporaries that Stacey has written. It reads with Stacey's signature humor, but resonates more than her RS books (The Devlin Group) and is more introspective than her western historicals.
Keri and Joe were high school sweethearts until Keri up and left for California and left Joe to nurse a broken heart. It isn't until far later in the book that we find out why
Keri left. And it's a good enough reason for a young 18 year old girl.
They spend a lot of time together on a Kowalski family vacation so that Keri can conduct a do-or-die interview with Joe for her magazine. While together, they rediscover each other on an adult level, and fall in love again.
If I could change one thing about this book, it would be that Keri would tell Joe exactly why she left. I wish they could have talked that out, much in the same way that Joe's brother and sister talked out their problems with their own spouses.
Joe's sister and brother each carry on their own side romance in this book, but although they are strong stories in their own right, somehow they don't overshadow the main couple. I thought that Terry and Mike's stories were realistic, and in turn heartbreaking, sad, and uplifting.
Stacey's clear love and knowledge of the 4-wheeling, camping lifestyle shines through in this book, and I enjoyed reading about it. Keri's initial horror at it keeps the reader from feeling left out of the inner circle.
The Kowalski's overwhelming love and support of each other no matter what makes this a strong, family-oriented book, full of laughter, heartbreak, fun, and love. Strongly recommended.
More to come on my personal blog.