Overall Grade: 4.5 ⭐️
“You simply had to do your best to make something beautiful out of the shattered pieces.”
How do you move past tragedy? How do you find meaning in the presence of loss? These questions are the foundation of Catherine Cowles’s beautiful story, Shattered Sea. Following Boden, a Hollywood mega-star, and Laiken, the small-town girl “etched in grief,” Cowles weaves a story about two people struggling with their scars who are drawn to each other from the day they meet. Cowles’s talent in romance is drawing stories strewn with angst; oftentimes, these are portraits of grief and trauma. She takes these problematic topics and wraps them in enduring romances with the heart of a small town community. Stories such as Shattered Sea are “forever love” stories. Unfortunately, to get there, she must put her readers through their paces, and she does this in a big way in this newest book. There is always a villain, and most of the time she’s careful to avoid forecasting this character. I suspected the villain of this story, but I’ll be honest, it was a bit of a curveball, keeping me on my toes almost to the end of the book.
What I loved the most about Shattered Sea is Boden’s almost instantaneous love for Laiken. In this story, Laiken requires to be loved as Boden loves her. She’s endured heavy levels of pain. As Boden falls in love with her, you find yourself drawn to him because he heals her soul in unexpected ways.
I also loved Cowles’s infusion of dogs to mimic Boden and Laiken’s love affair. It adds cute to this story and creates a respite from the story’s angst.
Finally, Cowles continues to infuse the found family trope into her Tattered & Torn series, as Laiken and Boden find themselves surrounded by the former characters of this series. She adds in a few more characters to underscore the power of a family formed through love and respect, not blood, and she grabs your heart as she’s wont to do with her stories.
Once again, Catherine Cowles has written a gorgeous story about overcoming obstacles in our lives. She’s infused it with her special recipe of love in small towns. Shattered Sea reminds me WHY I will always read a Catherine Cowles romance.
In love and romance,
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