I didn’t know this was coming out. Didn’t even know it’s being written. Talk about an avid reader, ha? LOL
I wasn’t a huge fan of the first two books, but I will admit that this story keeps getting better with each book. I very much enjoyed book 3 and thought that at the point all the characters involved grew a lot, matured and turned out to be normal individuals and not petulant children. Mostly.
That Here Without You deals with Reid and Brooke’s biological child was a big surprise and I was very curious what Mr. Webber is planning.
After Reid FINALLY got his act together, his selfish, obnoxious personality in order – he also got the girl. Dorcas (Dori) agreed to be his girl. Yay.
Here Without You opens with Reid frustrated that Dori keeps her relationship with him hidden from her parents, which means they can’t go out in public. Of course, by the time she does (fairly at the beginning of the book, don’t worry), other life hurdles fall on Reid, in the form of his biological son, of whom he learned just a few months back.
Brooke, Reid’s ex-girlfriend from 5 years ago has nightmares about the baby she gave up for adoption years before. When she hires a private investigator to check on the child, she learns he is back with child services due to abuse and neglect. This, of course, sets her on a mission – she’s going to get River, her son back.
I loved the progression of the story in this book. I felt like all of the characters involved matured, wised-up, whatever you want to call it, and that alone set a good pace for the plot. Nothing felt rushed, yet nothing lagged.
Reid, whilst more responsible, more tame and a lot more serious now that he has Dori in his life and he really loves her, appreciates her and learns from her, is still a little bratty in the beginning. But that changes when he makes a decision regarding his involvement in Brooke’s endeavors.
Also, Reid… SWOOOOOOON!
Dori, away for college, learns to trust her feelings and Reid’s feelings. She learns that good friends can be found in new people walking into her life and she learns how to stand up to preconceptions and maybe even finds her faith in God again after believing he (she?) deserted her and Deb (her sister if you forgot). Even Dori’s parents changed with the progression of the story and as a result, Dori’s bond with them changed, and possibly grew stronger.
Brooke grows SO MUCH in this book. She makes a weighted, adult and responsible decision about her personal life, her career and what is important to her, based on how she lives her life now and how she grew up. She realizes family can be different than the organic, biological unit that raised her and she follows her heart and conscience.
And what tugged at the strings of my heart the most was River. Some of the chapters are in River’s POV, and a 4 year old’s mind, especially one who doesn’t talk, is mature and yet so innocent and vulnerable. I found it fascinating how Webber was able to get into an abused child’s mind. I thought it was subtle and not presumptuous and it felt very honest.
The book delicately skirts around the foster system’s issues and intertwines it in a love story. The love story of parents with the child and parents with their respective partners. And it is all done very realistically (even if the MCs are Hollywood stars).
The series as a whole is very recommended. While the first couple of books feel like ground breaking for the actual story which starts in Good For You and continues in this Here Without You.
About Tammara Webber:
I write New Adult / Young Adult Romance. EASY is my NA contemporary novel. BETWEEN THE LINES is my YA/NA contemporary series. Available from: Amazon, Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iBookstore, IndieBound, and the Book Depository.
I’m a hopeful romantic who adores novels with happy endings, because there are enough sad endings in real life. Before writing full-time, I was an undergraduate academic advisor, economics tutor, planetarium office manager, radiology call center rep, and the palest person to ever work at a tanning salon. I married my high school sweetheart, and I’m Mom to three adult kids and four very immature cats.