Recently The Pagan and The Pen Reviews agreed to read A Piece of My Heart and the short story sequel, Constant Craving. Arriving home from a very long weekend I found this review in my in-box. I'm so very appreciative!
This pair of books presents an adorable and realistically romantic story of two high school sweethearts who never lost love for each other. Ms. Shortland writes Mick as the kind of many that any woman would love to have the chance to have, hold, and heal. Kate is a powerful, independent but innocent woman with a firm grasp of what love means.
In A Piece of My Heart, Kate and Mick share a lot of commonalities: an inheritance, a need to reconcile the past, and a sense of lost connection. Their reactions to each other and to the situations in which they find themselves are delightfully realistic, and their passion for each other is steamily respectful; a line that most authors have trouble walking. Predictably (why else do we read romance novels?!?) Kate and Mick work through their problems and the story ends with something akin to “…and they all lived happily ever after.”
One of my biggest problems with most romance novels is that they only deal with the heat, the passion, the chase that leads up to the long-awaited (and extremely satisfying) coupling. Yet few novels dare to delve into what happens when the after-glow fades and the couple is forced to live together with normal trials and tribulations. This is where Kemberlee Shortland shines.
Constant Craving is a wonderful short story that takes place a year after Kate and Mick buried the hatchet and shook the standing stones. There is little classical romance to be found here; instead Kate is tired, has baby blues from a recent birth of twins, and finds herself bogged down by housework. Mick is sexually frustrated (gotta wait for a while after babies are born!), tired from working the farm, and spends all his free time working on repairing the house. How they manage to rekindle the romance, and reconnect as lovers is a beautiful story and is more than just icing on the cake; it’s a story of REAL love, and how it endures, perseveres, and grows.
~ Keri Stratton Alley, The Pagan and The Pen Reviews, 4 Tarot Cards