Past Heaven by Laura Ward
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: January 26, 2015
Format: eARC, 334 pages
How I got it: From the author
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Not every love story has a happy ending. Some just change your life.
Liz Atwater’s happily ever after was torn from her the instant her husband, Jack, was murdered. She is forced to pick up the shattered pieces of her life and raise her three young sons alone.
Reynolds Carter’s picture perfect Hollywood life ended the moment the paparazzi got hold of his girlfriend’s cheating scandal. As he watches his life unfold in the tabloids, he comes to a crossroads in his career and his purpose.
When Reynolds takes on the challenge of a new project, his world collides with that of Liz. Neither of them expected their professional relationship to evolve into friendship, or love.
But life is never simple.
Faced with complications from family, friends, and colleagues, Liz and Reynolds are left to decide whether two people from such different worlds can find happiness together.
Can they get past the pain, fear, and guilt and risk their hearts to love again?
Not every love story is just a happy ending. Some completely change your life.
A few months ago, I was given an opportunity to read and review a new-to-me author named Laura Ward. One of my blogger friends highly recommended her book and an author who wrote one of my favorite books of this year so far also gave it five stars. I couldn’t say no. Of course, it took me a little bit longer to get to it than I anticipated, and while I’m sorry it took me so long, I’m not sorry I read it. It was a beautiful second chance story.
Liz Atwater’s story started off sad. Her husband, who worked so tirelessly for the rights of mentally disabled people who can’t fight for their own, was murdered at the hands of an upset father. Now her children have lost their father, she’s lost her soul mate and she has no idea how to move forward with her life without Jack. A lot of her healing happens off-camera, so to speak, which kept this book from being overwhelmingly sad.
Reynolds Carter is one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, but after learning his girlfriend has cheated on him, he’s found himself tired of the drama and fake people. He heads home to his parents to try to gain some perspective and decide what he’d like to do next. He thinks he wants to step back from acting and try his hand at writing/directing, but he has to find his story. It’s there his parents tell him about their own sad past and he discovers the story of Jack Atwater. Jack’s story is exactly what Reynolds was looking for – a story about a real person who endeavored to make a difference, a story people will FEEL.
Reynolds approaches Liz with his idea and she’s surprisingly warm to the idea, provided she gets ultimate say over the direction the movie takes. She sees it as a good way to make sure Jack’s legacy lives on and he isn’t forgotten. As she and Reynolds write, they grow close. Their friendship and then more built naturally, but it wasn’t always easy on Liz. It was easy to feel how conflicted she was at times. It took her awhile to truly trust Reynolds, because she feared he was only there for the story. Plus, she had her boys to think about. No man could ever truly replace Jack, but did that mean they couldn’t have a father figure? Didn’t they all deserve a second chance?
If you’re a fan of second chance love stories, Laura Ward’s Past Heaven should definitely be on your radar. It was sad but hopeful, sweet and sexy, raw and real. It definitely packed an emotional wallop at times, but it wasn’t overly angsty. I’m glad I’ve been introduced to Laura’s writing. I look forward to reading other books from her soon.
I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.