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|Print List Price:||£6.99|
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Out of the Shadows (Dreamspun Desires Book 40) Kindle Edition
|Length: 197 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Christian Hernandez is basically a recluse. After an accident eight years ago that left him with serious burns and scarring, he hides away in his apartment and never leaves. He’s so afraid of other people’s reactions to how he looks, that he’s cut off all physical contact with the outside world. His groceries are delivered to the outside of his door, where he then takes them in after the delivery person has left. If he needs to leave the house when he feels like the walls are closing in, he leaves it until late at night when most people are back in their homes, and he can disappear in the shadows. The highlight of his days is watching one of the handymen that works around the grounds of his apartment building tending to the gardens. Christian has an attraction to the man but knows he’s safe being able to admire him from behind his patio blind. When he receives a letter from the apartment housing association telling him that his kitchen and bathrooms are going to be renovated, Christian’s world is thrown into a tailspin. He resigns himself to being locked away in his bedroom for as long as the work takes.
Josh Wendell has heard the stories and gossip about the resident in building 197. How he never leaves the house and how no one has ever seen him. But Josh never usually pays attention to rumours or other people’s opinions and likes to make up his own mind. When Josh is promoted by the housing association to upgrade the apartments, he discovers that he’s going to be working in the home of the mystery man. After a couple of days of conversation through locked doors, Josh and Christian start to become friendly and are able to laugh and joke with each other. But when Christian falls coming out of the shower and injures himself, the two men finally have their first face to face encounter.
Through their common interests, and with the help of Josh’s friends, Christian begins to come out of his self-imposed solitude and to become part of the big world again. He pushes his boundaries far beyond what he ever thought possible and learns that life can be so wonderful if you let your worries go and just enjoy what it has to offer.
There’s so much I want to say about this book, but I really don’t think I can fully express how much I loved it with just words. Christian made my heart want to break into a million pieces. His loneliness was often too much to take because he was just existing and not living each day. Josh was like sunshine on a rainy day when he entered Christian’s life. He gave Christian something he needed, but that he didn’t realise he was missing until that day. There were so many parts throughout the story that had me giggling and grinning, you would think I was a love-struck schoolgirl. The connection between Josh and Christian was so incredibly sweet that I couldn’t help but feel all warm and fuzzy with each and every word I read.
A huge and very well deserved 5 stars for this book and author. I don’t think I’ve ever felt this happy and joyful at the end of a book, and I think it’ll be a while before I come down from the cloud I’m currently floating on. But while I’m here, I’m going to enjoy every second of it, just like I did with this story.
***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book***
This is a sweet and gentle twist on a classic romance. Josh slowly falls for a badly scarred recluse as he renovates Christian’s apartment. The relationship starts with notes and progresses to conversations across closed doors before Josh and Christian actually meet in person. As the men discover shared interests and spend more and more time together, their tentative friendship becomes a lasting romantic connection.
When we first meet Christian, he is alternately spying on Josh as he works in the garden and hiding from Josh when he works in his apartment. His behaviour is odd (and a little bit creepy) but it is explained when we learn about his scars and his traumatic experiences. Christian’s character is revealed slowly as he gains confidence and starts to engage with the world. His return to society is pretty quick and not terribly believable but I always suspend disbelief for the Dreamspun Desires books.
Josh is the sexy contractor that Christian has spent a great deal of time watching. Fate has him assigned to renovate Christian’s home. Again, Josh’s easy acceptance of Christian’s scars and his ability to pacify Christian’s crippling anxiety make him a little too good to be true - but this is a modern fairy tale.
I enjoyed the conversations between Josh and Christian and the slow build romance in this story. Theirs is a sweet and easy romance and I really enjoyed their journey to their HEA. As always, this Dreamspun Desires book provides a traditional romance format and a gentle low angst, low sex story.
Christian and Josh are both eminently likeable characters, Josh being confident, hardworking, outgoing and seriously determined; and although Christian is very reserved and introverted at the beginning of the story, he proves to be a fun, caring, incredibly courageous man. The secondary cast in this story are seriously awesome too; supportive, accepting, great friends.....making for a truly lovely, low angst, emotional at times, sweet, hopeful, love story.
As always, this is beautifully written, a flowing, engaging story, that will keep you turning pages. I highly recommend this feel good romance.
Reviewed for divinemagazine.biz
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