Throwback Thursday : The Fall & The Mind by Kate Stewart


He was the beginning of my heart . . . and the end of it. I was only fifteen years old when he claimed it and twenty when he took it with him. They say what is meant to be will find a way. But when you have changed to the point of no return, how can anything ever be the same? Seven years later, Dean Martin waltzed back into my life in hopes of resuming what I had fought so hard to forget, but he was in for a wake-up call. I was no longer the naïve woman he had left . . . and I was no longer his. I met the love of my life and my soul mate when I was fifteen. I knew that; he knew that. He wanted that girl back. I wanted to forget she ever existed. 

What I thought was my pre-destined path was very much an illusion. Living seven years with regret, I realized too late that I was broken, and that I only had myself to blame. I thought love could wait . . . but it didn’t. We’d had it all those years ago, and then I foolishly left it behind. She was all that mattered. She was all there ever was. There was no life without Dallas, no reason . . . except her. No matter how hard she tried to convince me, I knew I had to once again make her mine, to make her remember . . . the fall.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
4.5 "Ojos estrellados" STARS

This was a second chances, angst-ridden and at times, difficult read for me. I love Kate Stewart's stories and this was no exception although I had my moments with both Dallas and Dean. I vacillated back and forth as to whose team I was on. I had many moments where I wanted to shake them silly for their selfishness and hardheadedness but through it all, I knew their love was true and I so desperately wanted them to have a HEA.

The timing is never right for these two. They meet in high school when Dallas is a freshman to Dean’s senior and have one great year together where a deep and beautiful friendship is yet formed. Yet through that year, Dallas yearns for more and hopes that Dean will make a move. But he doesn't because he feels despite his connection to Dallas and the undeniable fact that he wants her, she's too young. So instead, he sleeps his way through the female population. Okay, I exaggerate...

Then they end up at the same college. Again the three year difference puts them in different places in life yet Dallas is bold and makes a move that Dean simply can’t resist. These two together were like fireworks on the fourth of July! Awesome, sizzling, bigger than life but over just as they got started.

Again circumstance and their own stupidity (IMHO) tears them apart for a long time....7 years to be exact. While I was more understanding of Dallas's side, neither of them are saints in this. They both contributed to the hurt, they both walked away and they both broke each other's trust (and no, it has nothing to do with cheating).

“We got it right the first time. We just fucked up a little along the way. We weren’t perfect – never have been – but we were beautiful. We still are.”

I was thrilled that this was sort of a spin-off from Kate's Room 212, if you haven't read it, you should. Dallas is one of the H/h's children. And I also love that there's more stories to come from this series...just thinking about Rose, Dallas's sister, makes my heart hurt.

I highly recommend this book if you love romance that is unforgettable and worth travelling a rocky road, you need to read this!

**ARC generously provided by Kate Stewart in exchange for an honest review.**

We fell in love in a lightning strike, a sudden anomaly in a sea of lost people. He knew right away, yet I was hesitant. I could have never prepared myself for a love like ours. No one could. As a child, I had conjured an amazing story in my mind. It was a story I could retell about a man that would move me like no other; a story about the way we met and how he had swept me off my feet. But, the ending to that fairytale was so far from the reality. No one will want to hear that story now, but for Grant, I will always tell it. 

 ***Explicit Sex and Language. Not for those who are not fans of spontaneous love affairs.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
5 “Go get her” STARS

This novella's a prequel to Rose's story, The Heart. We met Rose and Grant in The Fall and while this novella is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone. But there are some spoilers to The Fall and also, IMO, meeting Rose and Grant in the first book really sets the stage for their story in The Mind. I strongly recommend reading The Fall first.

This was utterly heartbreaking and breathtakingly beautiful. Having read the first book, I knew how this would end for Rose and Grant, and even knowing that, this was not an easy read. To say I cried would be an understatement. It wasn't pretty.

I loved Rose from the first book and by the end, I was jonesing for her story. I'll admit, while I thought Grant was sweet, sexy and I liked him, I had my reservations. Insta-love isn't a turn off for me because I do believe it's possible (I see those eye rolls) but it's rare that an author can make it work for me.

I'm not trying to convert you but I'll ask this question: Haven't you ever just instantly clicked with someone (doesn't have to be romantic) that it's like you're meant to meet? Meant to be connected; together even if for a fleeting moment in time? And that time spent with that person changes you. Makes your world view different, better or more? If not, sorry to hear that. Anyway, for me, in short order, Kate was able to win me over to Grant's vision and beliefs that Rose was THE one.

“I had planted the seed of a future for myself a long time ago without ever really seeing the big picture.”

Grant was an old soul and a true romantic. Understanding his childhood, why he saw things the way he did, his beliefs and his loss made all of it fit. There’s no denying that Grant had an ethereal quality about him. Many of his sweet and loving words to Rose were filled with promise but also double entendres and held a much deeper and prophetic significance.

Throughout the tale of Rose and Grant, Kate’s words made me feel like I was Rose. I connected with her so easily and got her attraction to Grant but also her skepticism in the beginning to Grant’s intense feelings and his resolute faith in them as a couple. Rose was protecting her heart; afraid to fall too far too fast and I got that. But once she trusted in that feeling between them, once she saw Grant’s heart and love, she was all in.

Right now, I’m seriously in love with Grant and just don’t know how I'm Rose’s going to move on and find another love. But knowing Kate, she’ll work her magic and I know she’ll have me eating my words.

If you believe in epic love stories and that every love has a worth and purpose no matter how brief, you must read this story!

**ARC generously provided by Kate Stewart in exchange for an honest review.**

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