Series: Mending Hearts, Book 1
Author: L.B. Simmons
Published: January 4th 2013, L.B. Simmons
Edition: ebook, 292 pages
Genre: Romance, Drama
Age group: Adult
I had the perfect life.
Beautiful and loving husband.Three gorgeous little girls.
The only thing missing was the white picket fence. I really wanted that fence.
Three years ago, I lost that life. I lost my husband. And I lost myself. But, eventually, I found my way through the darkness. I’ve made peace with my new life. I have my girls, and that’s all that matters. They are my world. I have no illusions of ever falling in love again or getting whisked away on a white horse.
But then he came back into my life. On a freakin’ motorcycle.
There’s no way I’ll let him turn my life completely upside down. Absolutely no way.
The question is…
How long can I keep pretending that I’m happy with my life being right-side up?
Being a fan of romance stories, I’m always on the look out for interesting books of this genre. In case of ‘Running On Empty’ I was not only sold onto it’s summary and high ratings on Goodreads, but it’s cover was very pretty and I couldn’t resist.
I typically like this type of setting, when a widowed man or woman with kids finds his/her second chance at love. This story is about Alex, whose husband died in a car crash, leaving her alone to raise three little daughters. Three years have passed since those events, but Alex is nowhere close to moving on. She has put her life on hold, and her only joy are her daughters, who mean the world to her.
The girls (Nycole, 9; Kyndall, 7 and Rylie, 4) are very energetic and fun. They are very playful, but even as young as they are, they would do anything for their mother. I liked them generally, but because there was just too many scenes with them interacting either with each other or Alex, sometimes they seemed like the main characters.
But the kids’ excessive presence in the story also made me more comprehensive of the situation Alex was in. I mean, I don’t know what it’s like to have to raise three daughters all alone, but the story made this situation very realistic and I could imagine how hard it really is.
The kids’ part was also probably the only thing I liked about this book. I still can’t understand why it has such high ratings. For this book being positioned as a romance, it has a pretty weak and unrealistic love story. And this is mostly the problem of the two main characters.
Alex acts unexplainably rude to Blake when she sees him for the first time, and the explanation for this is really lame. He wanted to help her, but she’s all against anybody doing anything for her, so it’s better to scream at people in public places. And Blake supposedly was in love with her since 12(!!!) years old and being now 33, he still can’t forget her. Well I find it very unbelievable and crazy!
Besides, it is told that Alex and Blake were BFFs at school, but when Alex met her future husband, Blake was absolutely forgotten and they never even spoke. Well, then I think they were not as great friends, and again I can’t get this type of situation. Boyfriends are boyfriends, and friends are friends, one doesn’t necessarily exclude the other.
There was also nothing special or unique about Alex or Blake as individuals to make them either likable, or to help me emotionally connect to them. Aside from sympathizing with Alex’s situation, this story didn’t get any emotion from me. It was very predictable. The two characters meet after 16 years of separation, start communicating, become friends again. Then there are love confessions, followed by some drama, of course, and then the expected happy end.
One thing great about this story is that it’s really short, I read it in a couple hours and forgot about it as quickly.
Favorite quote: “You’ll never have your happy ending unless you’re brave enough to open the book and start your story.”