Overall Grade: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️⭐️
Rebecca Yarros is a storyteller. In the world of romancelandia, many strive for $ex positivity in their stories, often forgoing the story’s sentimentality. There is nothing wrong with that, but for this reader, smash scene after smash scene becomes monotonous and boring. What holds a book together is strong characterization and plot pacing that drive the reader towards the end.
Prior to reading Yarros’s Reason to Believe, the first book of her new Legacy series, I had a bit of ennui about the stories I’d been reading. Nothing seemed to light my reader fire. I was in the doldrums, awaiting a story that connected with me. When I read the blurb for Reasons to Believe, I was instantly intrigued: a young woman who takes on the care of two boys after the death of their mother overnight. Her temporary space isn’t big enough for them, and the only one possibly available to her belongs to her brother’s best friend and her unrequited love, Knox. Under the seriousness of the situation, she asks to stay at his house so she can care for the boys. After his affirmative answer, she moves in only to be met with him a day later. He jumps in to assist her even though he’s spent seven years keeping his distance from her. Their attraction cannot be denied, especially when they enter a marriage of convenience to keep caring for the boys. Many elements of this story made me want to read it. Even more, having read two of Yarros’s former stories, her adeptness in developing stories ensured Reason to Believe would be the solution I needed to my ennui problem.
And it did not disappoint.
Everything promised in Yarros’s blurb is provided in her newest book. You cannot help but fall in love with Knox and Harper. It’s clear from the start that they “burn” for each other, but, as we find with many a brother’s best friend story, he’d been warned off. And in that fashion, Knox complied, even though the reader wants to bat him over the head for it. Harper is strength personified. She endures unrequited feelings, she ensures the safety and care of two young boys, and she believes that Knox has the capacity to love, even though he endeavors to avoid it. The most moving moments of the story occur when Harper acknowledges the little “things” about Knox, and he starts to recognize the actions of love. Their journey is the driving force behind this book.
Add to that two other stories: one related to fostering and the other to recreating a team of hotshots. If you read Yarros’s acknowledgments and dedication, you know that fostering is a personal mission. Therefore, Reason to Believe reads like an ode to that compassionate, selfless action. She takes her readers through the emotional journey of caring for, falling in love with, and having to make eternal decisions for the future of children. If Knox and Harper’s love affair doesn’t make you tear up, Harper and Knox’s fostering path will. If their romance journey is the driving force of the book, their experience raising Liam and James is its heart.
Besides that story, the plot line about the Legacy hotshots is the thread that binds this series together. It also provides a respite from the emotional upheaval of the romance and the fostering storylines, as Knox, Ryker, Harper’s brother, and Bash, their friend, work to resurrect their father’s heritage as hotshots. Yarros deftly uses this as a mechanism to build her series while offering insight into this dangerous occupation.
Reason to Believe is beautifully written, an ode to foster parents everywhere. It also is seamless in its storytelling, and it is difficult to put down. Rebecca Yarros has quickly become a must-read for me.
In love and romance,