From the blurb:
Chris McQuaid is dying, and David Lamont will move mountains to fulfill his best friend’s last request—to have his estranged wife by his side until the end. A more spiteful, spoiled, callous woman never lived, but David agrees to talk her into it.
Joanna McQuaid reached her breaking point a long time ago, but she couldn’t break things off permanently. Oppressive, manipulative and toxic as Chris is, she can’t divorce him without becoming a pariah for abandoning the pillar of the community in his final days.
That doesn’t mean she has to lay eyes on him, though—until David masterfully plays on her last shred of guilt. After all, what kind of woman breaks a dying man’s heart?
David congratulates himself for successfully dragging Joanna home, until he learns who really mistreated whom…and how far Chris’s betrayal goes. As they unexpectedly draw on each other for strength, Joanna and David discover something more. Something neither of them knew they needed.
Warning: Contains two people who have been way too strong for way too long, a whole lot of justifiably broken vows, and three hearts who are running out of time to find forgiveness.
This is my 16th book by Lauren Gallagher but my first by her under this pen name. I'm used to her M/M stuff under L.A. Witt, and I was really curious how I would find her writing M/F. It turns out, I like her just fine! This book is exceedingly readable. Sure, it was predictable and sometimes frustrating, but I simply could not put it down!
I found most of this book to be really compelling. I found the small ways that Chris demoralized Joanna to be fascinating and disturbing. The manipulations made me want to strangle him and tell Joanna to just cut and run. However, it was their dynamic that made this book so addictive to read. It is easy reading- you just want to read one more page to see how things play out. Before you know it, two hours have passed. I think that this author just writes books the way I like to read them.
However, on the flip side, this book has some of the WORST foreshadowing that I've ever read. There is no way, NONE, that readers will miss any of the twists and turns, ages before they are revealed. There are too many hints, and it took away all of the emotion of those moments.
There is also no chance that David would have missed what an epic douche bag that his "best friend" was and all of the evil stuff that he did. Chris would have had to be deaf, dumb, and blind. I didn't buy that part of the story for a second and I don't think most readers will either.
I also didn't see how the sudden chemistry between David and Joanna would magically spring to life after knowing each other for many years and hating each other. It didn't quite gel for me.
Finally, I didn't love how Joanna sort of backed down towards the end and didn't slug it to Chris. I wasn't rooting for him in any sense, and I wanted Joanna to REALLY put him in his place. Alas, we can't always get what we want.
Though this book is FAR from perfect, I think readers who like dysfunctional relationships and stories that make you feel TONS of emotions will enjoy this one.
**Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review**
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