Title: Forever My Girl
Series: The Beaumont, Book 1
Author: Heidi McLaughlin
First published: December 27th 2012, Bandit Publishing
Edition: ebook, 220 pages
Genre: Romance, drama
Age group: Adult
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I didn’t expect to actually like this book when I started reading it. I read the summary and thought it would be some cheesy easy-reading story I could cover in half a day. And while this book really does reads well, the plot and writing are also very likable.
I’ve read quite a lot of romance stories about love at second chance, and most of the time they didn’t go well with me. The development would always seem rushed and the characters too simple.
Forever My Girl is a rare exception to this genre, as I liked everything in it – the characters, the plot, the writing.
The main hero Liam was a quarterback at his school football team and his plans for adult life were known to everybody – go to college, then play NFL and marry his cheerleader girlfriend Josie. He and Josie were inseparable and had planned their future together to every little detail.
But when school was over and Liam headed to college, away from his friends and Josie, he felt lonely. His way of dealing was writing music and playing his guitar. It was actually his real passion, not football, but he never confessed it to anyone, afraid that nobody would understand and support him.
But as the time went on, Liam got more anxious, and after meeting with his long lost grandmother he decided to take on her advice to follow only his dreams. That became a turning point not only in his life, but also his friends and Josie’s. Liam left for Los Angeles to become a musician cutting off any contact with Josie and everyone he knew in Beaumont.
In the course of 10 years Liam becomes a rock star. The life he is leading now is a total opposite to the one he once imagined with Josie. He likes it and he hates it. It’s hard to always be aware of the paparazzi and gossip magazines, but writing music and performing is something that brings him peace. Every song Liam writes is a confession of his still present feelings to Josie. He never forgot her, never stopped loving her. But there’s no turning back for Liam. What’s done is done, he understands that, but can’t help thinking whether he should have taken Josie with him.
I was very affected by Liam’s emotional struggles. There’s nothing doubtful or strained about his love for Josie even after so many years. The way author mixed scenes from Liam and Josie’s past into the present events not only gave an image of how strong and real their love was, but also helped understanding Liam’s actions.
When Liam’s best friend from school Mason dies, Liam can’t deny himself coming back to Beaumont not only for the funeral, but to face the results of his leaving and make sure that Josie is happy without him. And what he finds there makes him realize all the things he was missing.
It’s not only Josie and their love that Liam left behind, for he discovers that when he went to LA and became unattainable, Josie was pregnant.
Now that Liam meets his 10-year old son Noah and sees Josie for the first time after such a long separation, he understands he can’t go back to the life he was leading in Los Angeles. He was content with his life before, he was successful, but he wasn’t happy. His happiness is his family – Josie and Noah, and Liam is ready to risk his career to prove that he won’t ever leave again.
I loved the happy ending to the story, so romantic, so much love. I didn’t find anything unrealistic or irritating in Liam and Josie’s love story. I didn’t feel like ‘No way, he left her 10 years ago, and now she forgives him and takes him back like nothing happened?’ It was just pure, good romance, one that can’t not appeal to you.
I know there’s nothing new about this type of story, but I loved how easy-going and charming Heidi McLaughlin made it. It was an unexpected but immediate like, and I can’t wait to read the next book in this series, now about Josie and Liam’s friends Katelyn and Harrison.