Without a doubt one of the best read I’ve had this year. I wasn’t expecting half the emotions I felt devouring the pages of Steadfast. The writing, the flashbacks, the angst and the reality of her characters truly reeled me in. I fell in love with this book in an instant and couldn’t put it down. Simply beautiful, honest and real.
Jude lost everything one spring day when he crashed his car into an apple tree on the side of the road. A man is dead, and there’s no way he can ever right that wrong. He’d steer clear of Colebury, Vermont forever if he could. But an ex-con in recovery for his drug addiction can’t find a job just anywhere.
For Sophie Haines, coming face to face with the man who broke her heart is gut-wrenching. Suddenly, he’s everywhere she turns. It’s hard not to stare at how much he’s changed. The bad boy who used to love her didn’t have big biceps and sun-kissed hair. And he’d never turn up volunteer in the church kitchen.
She knows it’s foolish to yearn for the man who returned all the heartsick letters she wrote him in prison. But the looks he sends her now speak volumes.
No one wants to see Sophie and Jude back together, least of all Sophie’s police chief father. But it’s a small town. And forbidden love is a law unto itself.
Author : Sarina Bowen
Title : Steadfast
Series : True North #2
Number of pages : 313
Release Date : July 12, 2016
Genre : Contemporary, NA.
A new trope is taking over the romance novels… Haven’t you noticed?
Billionaires seem to have been relinquished to the back shelves and more down to earth, next door neighbors kind of heroes own the front row…
Blue collar type of heroes over arrogant business men… I for one, can definitely see the appeal. While I’m not completely over the idea of a man in suit, I’m more naturally attracted to heroes I feel I’d be attracted to in real life. Romance novels and me… A success of a great read for me is the ability to project myself, and to feel for the characters as if they were real.
And Steadfast could not have been better regarding that last point. Sarina Bowen delivered here the most down to earth and honest characters I’ve been given the pleasure to read.
In all honesty, I finished the book wondering how she’d done it to make me fall for whom everyone would consider a loser at first glance.
Her hero, I believe, was not written with the purpose to make you swoon. I didn’t feel like she was trying to write your typical bad boy nor the anti hero we’re used to read about in our romance novels.
She just wrote a character that felt REAL. Honest. True. Jude Nickel is not a stereotype. He’s flawed and has baggage.
Oh yes, I hear you, we’ve read characters like him already… Except… Not really.
For the first time as in maybe.. EVER, I felt like this character’s flaws were not just a mean to some angst in the plot… Not just an accessory to some cheap romance.
No. Jude flaws and problems were the story. His issues were not brushed over like I’ve read so many times, to give a character’s credit or grit. The author insights about a drug addict recovery, or more exactly on his path to recovery are uncanny.
And let me tell you, despite his anti hero traits, despite the non-dreamy settings, despite the fact Jude seemed so far away from any charming prince… I fell hard for him.
Thanks to the amazing storytelling, I was equally hooked on his POV, the brilliantly done flashbacks and Sophie’s side of the story.
For all I’m concerned, the romance story between Jude and Sophie was just the cherry on top. Not only Sarina Bowen created a hero you WANT to read about and never let go but she paired him with an equal authentic and lovable heroine.
I don’t know what to say about this book except that everything is set to make you lose yourself within its pages.
I also don’t want to say too much and ruin the experience it was discovering all the little things that makes Steadfast one of my favorite book of the year.
If you’re looking for a romance story and are tired of all the romance stereotypes, or simply if you need something new all wrapped up in feelings and authenticity, then I can only suggest ( recommend, order even!) to one click that breath of fresh air that is Steadfast.
Sarina Bowen is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and New Adult fiction from the wilds of Vermont.
Her Ivy Years and Brooklyn Bruisers books are hockey romance novels. These two connected series began breaking hearts in 2014 with The Year We Fell Down. See http://www.sarinabowen.com for updates.
HIM and US are the bestselling, hockey LGBT novels co-written with Elle Kennedy. HIM is also a finalist for the Romance Writers of America’s RITA® Award.
For lovers of angsty snowboarders, Sarina also writes the Gravity series, featuring snow sports heroes.
Sarina enjoys skiing, coffee products and a nice glass of wine. She lives with her family, six chickens and more ski gear and hockey equipment than seems necessary.