Degrees of Love: A Novel

Degrees of Love: A Novel

by Lisa Slabach


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Degrees of Love: A Novel by Lisa Slabach

In this powerful debut, a successful businesswoman embarks on a journey of self-discovery that will shake her to the core.Like the shiny new BMW parked in the driveway of the Silicon Valley home she shares with her husband, Matt, and their two boys, Susan Sinclair exudes confidence and style. Newly promoted to a prestigious Senior Vice President position at her firm, Susan is the picture of personal and professional success.Yet appearances are deceiving. With each advance in Susan's career, Matt has grown more distant. But he refuses to admit there is a problem, and Susan, determined to give her boys the close-knit family life she never had, forces herself to play along. Then she meets her new boss, Reese Kirkpatrick. She and Reese become a crackerjack team, but little by little, pleasure mixes with business. For the first time in a long time, Susan feels seen and appreciated for who she is. In a moment of weakness, friendship becomes something more. Now, unable to stomach the façade her marriage has become yet unwilling to decimate her family by moving forward with Reese, Susan faces a choice that could cost her everything—including her children . . . but possibly bring her more than she can dream.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781543907216
Publisher: BookBaby
Publication date: 12/01/2017
Pages: 344
Sales rank: 590,577
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Degrees of Love is Lisa Slabach's first novel. She is currently working on her third full-length manuscript and a collection of short stories inspired by her experiences growing up in a small farm community in Washington's Yakima Valley. In addition to writing, Lisa works for a Fortune 500 Company, leading a sales team in the financial industry. She currently resides in Davis, California with her husband and has two daughters who are both pursuing careers in film.

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Degrees of Love: A Novel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
Anonymous 11 months ago
About halfway through I really started to dislike Susan. She really bothered me with her profession of love for Reece, but would not leave her husband. I tried to get inside her head, but that scared the s#$t out of me. From the halfway point, I struggled with finishing the book. When I came to the ending, it was like "what did I just miss". I probably should have given this 2 stars. It could have been a great story and was really disappointed it wasn't.
MegKing More than 1 year ago
I loved that this book made me FEEL something. Sometimes I loved it, other times I thought it was a bit contrived and even annoying--but I was never, never bored. The story, overall, is engaging and creative- yet feels so real; I was surprised more than once, which I always appreciate, and the most important thing was that I believed in Susan, in her predicament, in her guilt, in her attraction, in her desires… Of course the book made my eyes pop wide at parts, and I was disgusted other times. How could I not? I am a woman, a wife and a mother. I think it is impossible not to become emotional when you become invested in the characters you love and can see yourself in. “Degrees of Love” by Lisa Slabach has the intellectual and emotional impact I look for in a great book, one that takes me away, teaches me something, makes me feel something, and when it’s over I feel like I’ve lost a good friend – but one whom I am lucky to have met. Recommend for mature readers of romance/drama/genre fiction, and I hope to read more from Ms. Slabach in the future.
LaylaM1 More than 1 year ago
I admit I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into in deciding to read this book, because admittedly I do tend to lean towards the paranormal/fantasy romance elements of literature because I enjoy the fun, make-believe parts. And a book about a woman who is having an affair on her husband? Probably not my usual fare. But I was intrigued by the writing sample and the way that I felt an almost immediate connection to not only the characters (especially Susan), but with the way that Lisa Slabach was writing them – such passion and authenticity… they almost demanded that I get to know them better, which I did. I found myself just wanting to read more… and more… and more… and I couldn’t believe it when I realized I was totally hooked, and I felt taken to another world just by experiencing the lives of these incredible characters who are so true to life and authentic, yet unlike any I’ve met before. Dark, troubled, romantic and sexy, and with secrets that eventually get out… this story could have been another cliché romance, but it was far from it because Slabach made the characters unique and gave them heart and it never felt contrived. Felt like something that really could happen, and does. Doesn’t make you a bad person. I didn’t guess the ending, as I thought it would play out differently (until the last chapter). Really glad I took a chance on this one. Recommend.
TabithaP1 More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars A beautifully written and richly evocative look at life, love, loss, and the ravages of good and bad, right and wrong, and actions that can potentially destroy families, careers, even lives, and the different ways people react to difficult situations, infused with some lighthearted moments of sweet romance and inspiring moments of self-discovery. This powerhouse of a story is equally packed with character-action and emotion, and is sure to please even the pickiest of romance readers. I felt a great connection with the characters as viewed through the lens of our main character Susan, and thought the narrative was clean and crisp, descriptive, but not overdone. Great writing, believable characters, nicely crafted storylines and a bold attempt at capturing many realistic, yet dark elements in modern married life and romance made “Degrees of Love” by Lisa Slabach a definite hit for me. Best recommended for older readers due to some adult scenes. Hope to read more from her soon!
BookPrincessSF More than 1 year ago
I thought “Degrees of Love” to be absolutely riveting! I started reading it one night after supper with every intention of reading just a few chapters for that evening and could not put it down. Not only is it an emotionally engaging story with well-drawn characters whom you grow to care about deeply, but it is also satisfies my need for the more complicated, complex side of life that I can only really experience through reading fiction novels such as this one. I am in a happy, stable marriage and am blessed and thrilled to be so. But I understand not everyone has the same experience, and in a way I feel like reading a book like this helps me to be a more open-minded and compassionate person. Read this book. I’m so thrilled that I got to ‘know’ these characters through these pages, and they are all genuine enough, and not the typical caricature ‘good girl/guy and bad girl/guy’ we see so often in this genre. A great book for anyone who wants a good story with relatable, flawed and endearing character we can root for and see a little of ourselves in as well, despite the circumstances. Some spicy scenes but nothing gratuitous. Just hot chemistry necessary for a romance.
BrendaMax More than 1 year ago
this was the first book I’ve read by this author Lisa Slabach, but I certainly hope it’s not the last. She has a real gift for writing descriptive and life-like scenes that really-bring the characters to life with natural sounding narrative and good action that makes sense for their roles and their situations (although I did sort of questions Reese’s actions at the end with the job drama). I like that this book didn’t feel stale or derivative of anything I’ve ever read before, which I thought it might be as I’ve read a few too many of the whole ‘love-triangle’ storyline before. But this was nothing like those. It is a deep and emotionally complex read that covers a lot of territory, but does so with remarkable clarity and fairness considering the heavy subject matter at times. It is profound and intelligent, original, jaw-dropping, romantic, sad, and hopeful… all the qualities I look for in a good book, and it delivered an emotional win in the end. Recommended for mature readers of women’s fiction/romance.
BellaReadz More than 1 year ago
4 1/2 stars this is an excellent book that captured my attention from the beginning, and never once let go. I felt part of Susan Sinclair’s seemingly ‘perfect’ world right away and even though she and I are very different, I was immediately able to relate to her (especially with some scenes with her and the kids, or her husband Matt). Smooth paced narrative and good dialogue that was engaging, imaginative, and flowed quickly from one scene to the next… never a “dull part” where you get bored or want to skip ahead… in fact almost the opposite with the various interweaving plotlines and going from one character and event to the next, especially once she goes to New York and meets Reese. The descriptions were very strong, and I mean with Slabach’s word choice… vivid and powerful with a very authentic feel to it, and while I do think at times some of the dialogue and conversations weren’t really necessary—more chit-chat that did little to advance the plot or the tension— it was still authentic and real. It is written in first person (Through Susan’s POV) and I felt like I was genuinely inside her head experiencing this all through her eyes, for better or worse. She has her own demons to overcome, not just with her marriage, but that is the foreground (and the affair and the fallout)… I thought the ending seemed a little weird (I didn’t like Reese’s last words to her) and I was unclear of the whole situation with her, Matt, the kids, etc… Just could have used a little better fleshing out, IMO (felt kind of rushed) but overall I definitely enjoyed this whole experience (more than I thought I would!) I would love to read more from Lisa Slabach as she has a natural gift for creating a well-thought out story and bringing memorable characters to life in an unpredictable and engaging and emotionally moving way.
JesseThomas More than 1 year ago
4 1/2 stars I’m not one for rehashing the plot (that’s what the summary is for on the book description page), but not only have I never read anything like this before, never did I think I would actually sympathize with a heroine who is cheating on her husband and placing the sanctity of her marriage and family at risk. Yet Ms. Slabach does such a great job of humanizing these characters and really putting us in their shoes, I had a hard time passing judgment and instead allowed myself to experience the pain and struggle of falling in love with someone when you are already committed to someone else. It’s not a fast and easy read by any stretch, but it will take you through whole different lives and experiences that maybe you’ve never thought of before. I felt a connection with each of these characters that I didn’t expect, especially Susan, and I thought Slabach’s prose was so genuine-feeling, the way she brought the scenes to life, and the attention to the personalities and the scene and character details that made it entertaining to read. I have a feeling that this book and the characters and their fates and experiences will stay with me for some time. I look forward to reading more from Ms. Slabach as she is truly a gifted storyteller AND writer (not necessarily the same thing…). Recommend for fans of romantic drama and literary fiction.
CJ2277 More than 1 year ago
"Degrees of Love” is wonderful book in which Lisa Slabach sweeps the reader away into a multitude of unforgettable, uncomfortable, exhilarating experiences through Susan Sinclar’s life as it turn upside down from a work romance outside her marriage. Slabach’s writing feels quite natural, and also has the ability to keep the reader totally engaged throughout the entire story, and that is no small feat considering that is isn’t exactly a high stakes action packed book, but more of an easy-paced voyage of self-discovery and live transitions, with a hot illicit romance and the struggle to salvage a family and marriage. Lots of obstacles everywhere. You want to keep reading it but at the same time you have to stop to think about it all and let it sink in as it is intense in the subject matter at certain points, and heartwarming and charming at other times, and downright sexy or depressing in others. The ending is nice – a bit quick, almost rushed it seemed. I did notice some instances of punctuation errors, but nothing that ruined the book for me. Although I was a little disappointed when it was all over, I would be happy to read more from Lisa Slabach someday
NicolaF More than 1 year ago
I thought this book by Lisa Slabach was great, and even though at first I thought I wouldn’t like it because I ‘disapprove’ of Susan’s choices morally, I found myself genuinely invested in her story and respecting the emotional struggle she endures. Slabach’s writing is so easy to get lost in - I was completely pulled in from the opening pages, and enjoyed the personality of the different characters – although we really only see Susan, Reese, and Matt for the most part (others have very little stage time). I loved Slabach’s attention to the character detailing-- we feel transported not only into Susan’s complex and interesting life, but her experiences with her job, her family, and her lover, Reese, and it is fascinating to watch the story develop with her and the other characters, especially Reese. . I thought that overall the book was well written and for the most part the editing was very clean. Even though I did wonder on occasion where the story was going, it was interesting to see how it all tied together in the end, which I loved! Felt organic and not contrived which is always a nice change, especially in romance. I was really impressed and would recommend this book to fans of chick lit/women’s fiction and romance
Coreeez More than 1 year ago
3.5 stars well, this book took me a while to read, but in the end I’d say it was worth it! I like how everything came together, and I enjoyed every page! Lisa Slabach writes VERY well… very descriptive and strong and we feel a great connection with the plight of Susan Sinclair and her life as she navigates through some substantial, extraordinary experiences when she gets a promotion at work and meets a man with whom she falls in love with – problem is she’s already married. While this is admittedly a familiar trope in romance/literature, I did feel that the unique character personalities and settings helped to make this storyline feel more original than anticipated. Some parts were a little slow (more towards the middle) and there are some very minor proofing things I spotted, But the overall takeaway is satisfying, and delivers a complex, wonderfully connected story about a flawed, yet relatable woman, her family and work life, and dealing with a crumbling marriage in the face of a hot new romance. As expected there are some serious complications and we are left wondering what will become of them all…. The ending may not be what we anticipate, but it works. Happy to read more from Slabach in the future. Mature readers only.
JTHACK More than 1 year ago
when I read books, usually I either like the plot, but the narrative seems flat (or too telling and long-winded) or the prose is good, but the storylines (or characters) seem contrived and stale. But I appreciated how seamlessly everything flowed in “Degree of Love” by Lisa Slabach with the nice balance between the two as this made it feel authentic and well- paced, making it hard to stop reading at any one particular point. It had it all, and was more emotionally complex than I expected, but also definitely raw and real and gritty…. Slabach did a terrific job of taking us on a high-stakes rollercoaster ride with Susan’s life, family, career, love, and finding out what she really wants in life and who she really is. Although not the typical novel I pick up to read for pleasure, I am genuinely glad I read this book and allowed myself to experience these situations with Susan and cast. It wasn’t perfect, but it was very good!
Darla_Ortiz More than 1 year ago
this was an emotional whirlwind rollercoaster that I was not expecting. LOVE these characters, even though I didn’t necessarily approve of their choices, it was all a very real part of the human experience. I do think it could have benefitted from more intense tension and conflict sooner (it is there at the end for sure)… because it did take me some time to feel really invested, about 25% of the way in I was pretty hooked. There is a strong (but small) supporting cast and I enjoyed watching the relationships develop (and dissolve) along the way, and see how it all comes together, with Susan reconciling her failing marriage (and why) with her feelings for Reese and her family. There are several interweaving plotlines always at play here, and kept me interested to see it through to the end. I’m not sure how I felt about the delivery of the conclusion but overall was a satisfactory conclusion end/new beginning. Recommend for mature readers due to some adult subject matter.
JhonniP More than 1 year ago
I think that “Degrees of Love” would make an excellent book club choice as there are just so many topics we can talk about and dissect deeper. There are so many different angles and subjects to talk about – from female roles and sexism (her husband wanting her be more of a stay at home mom despite successful career), infidelity, sexual choice, ethics and honesty, responsibility vs. enjoying this short life… and not even mentioning the amazing characters who bring the book to life in a believable way. I liked that we are able to really experience so many different aspects of Susan’s life and in different times as she narrates past events with her marriage with Matt. At times this book seems so crazy and dramatic, other times so ‘downhome’ and relatable…The pacing could have used some tightening, I thought and at times I questioned the focus, what the real point was. Some scenes just seemed unnecessary, like fluff just telling us about incidents that didn’t seem to progress the plot much. But there were some amazing events unfolding that were just mesmerizing and made the book that more impactful. I love discovering new authors, and Lisa Slabach will certainly be one to watch
AprilDawn More than 1 year ago
okay, I loved Lisa Slabach’s “Degrees of Love” (and the title is so perfect!) I feel she has captured several slices of real life - and the ugly and wonderful and unexpected twists and turns it can take when we least expect it, and in ways we might not imagine and with some unforgettable characters. But what I loved most about the book was seeing what people do in situations that require lots of ‘gray area” where things aren’t clearly black and white. Yes, obviously cheating is bad. But what if you fall in love with someone else and you are with the wrong person? Does it change things? When do needs and desires become a priority and at what point does it become cruel or selfish? At first I thought I wouldn’t like Susan, only because I thought she might be too self-absorbed, but I did grow to connect and empathizes with her character’s position, especially after learning more about her history with Matt. This is more than just a simple romance story, it is one with great depth and development along the way as well. Lisa Slabach tells this enticing story with finesse and great heart. It’s hard to read through to the end and remain unaffected in some way. A definite recommended read.
NikkyH7117 More than 1 year ago
How to describe this book, other than say it is by far one of the best books I’ve read in a long time! I have already loaned it to my friend to read, and my sister is right after her (it is right up their alley!) The author Lisa Slabach sucks us in to Susan Sinclair’s story right from the beginning pages, and skillfully narrates a wide-ranging storyline full of complex and deeply emotional issues that defy expectations and social acceptability at times. (adultery). The storyline is good, yes, but in my opinion it really is the characters who made this story so powerful, each so original and conflicted in their own way, and we can empathize with them throughout this ordeal – especially Susan, but also feel sorry for Matt (I don’t think he’s a bad guy), and it is even difficult for Reese as well. Susan is a solid lead, and so is Reese for that matter, and it is so interesting to see their story unfold, and where it ends up. Lots of bumps along the way. A memorable read and a keeper for sure. Recommend for mature fans of literary drama and romance as it has adult scenes, but nothing to graphic.
KMatthews More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars I really liked this book, “Degrees of Love” by Lisa Slabach. I thought it was excellently written and while there were some minor editing/grammar things on occasion, it was nothing too major. It kept my attention from the intriguing opening to the satisfying ending, although I admit after the first chapter I wasn’t really sure if I really wanted to continue, only because I didn’t feel enough of a ‘hook’ and things felt too normal. Glad I did. It is not a quick read by any stretch, nor should it be. There are too many important events and experiences here to gloss over so Slabach takes her time in carefully developing the various storylines with Susan, Matt, and Reese so that we the readers are thoroughly invested the whole way through. I liked Ms. Slabach’s writing style very much, and found myself engulfed in this sexy, raw, emotional world she recanted night after night. Was almost disappointed when I was done, but the ending gave the satisfaction I look for in a great book, which is rare for me these days. Well done. Recommend to fans of romance and drama, or anyone who just enjoys an entertaining, well-written story with lots of heart and character conflict and you actually feel like you are a part of the action unfold.
ClaireBear74 More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars Make no mistake, “Degrees of Love” is definitely a compelling, unforgettable read, and one that will appeal to a wide variety of readers due to its far-reaching and relevant plotlines that many women (and maybe men) could possibly relate to, even if they haven’t found themselves in this particular situation, or even disapprove (as most do). But I think the author handles the tough subject with dignity and grace and helps open our eyes to the issue without judgment. I liked how genuine and real it all felt - I always worry that with these types of books I’ll have to suspend my disbelief and go along with the flow for the sake of fiction entertainment because of some contrived, highly implausible romance that never would happen in ‘real life’, but not here. It actually felt like something that could happen…and the characters were so flawed it made them more believable, more human, if you will. Nothing I hate more than perfect leads! (Boring!) The story itself was fairly even-paced, but I thought the beginning was a bit slow (mostly the first chapter) but then it picked up and flowed well. One thing I particularly liked was how even though we are viewing the story mostly through the eyes of Susan, we see the bigger picture as well, and we feel like we are a part of this crazy ride-- never quite knowing what is around the corner. I didn’t like the ending as much as would have hoped – felt a bit anti-climactic after all that had happened, but it wrapped it up well enough. I recommend for fans of romantic literary fiction with a dramatic element. This is a standalone book it appears (not part of any series) but if Ms. Slabach writes more like this I’d be happy to read it!
SteffyC More than 1 year ago
holey moley, this book was terrific! Once I started reading I didn’t want to stop until I’d finished the whole thing. It was all I could do though not to rush it… this isn’t a ‘quick-easy light beach read” by any stretch, but more like something you sink back with for a while and let it take over your soul while you go through this heart-wrenching, exciting, and emotionally engaging experience with some pretty dynamic characters. I enjoyed Lisa Slabach’s literary “voice” and style of writing rapid-quick character dialogue who progressed the plot without all the “telling” narrative prose so many rookie authors make the mistake of doing. The interweaving plotlines were intelligent, well-developed and not predictable, and (most of) the characters were all genuine and interesting in their own right, [although I do think Matt was painted a little 2-dimensionally] and well-written, and I actually like that the cast is fairly small, so that way we are able to keep the focus where it belongs----mostly Susan, Reese, and Matt. Also, I have to commend the author on the way that she managed to tell not only a great story, but did so in a way that I didn’t feel like I’ve read the story a million times before which is rare in this genre. I’d love to read more from her in the future! Highly recommend to fans of romance/drama or anyone who enjoys a riveting, emotionally engaging book.
KayleeeKS More than 1 year ago
I’m not sure how to even describe this book as SO much happens, and it seems to touch on so many elements, themes, and subjects – yes, it is mostly about an extra-marital affair, but it encompasses so much more than that. Susan has great character development, but it’s kind of interesting how her life seemed to end up full circle at the end, in a way. Smooth pacing, plenty of action, and amazing characters/personalities, along with true, real life issues and drama (even if it’s fiction) makes this a definite winner in my eyes. The conversations with the characters were natural and flowed well, even though at times I did grow a bit weary of all the recanting of the marriage-relationship with Matt… it just seemed to slow the momentum, I think it could have been toned down some and we still would have gotten the point. But there is definitely more to this book than just meets the eye… had a lot more depth than I was expecting, I think that you need to take your time while reading it to really grasp everything the author is saying, and might even change your perspective on some things (but maybe not). Juts read it with an open mind---not all judgy that extra-marital affairs and cheating is bad. It has its tough parts emotionally, but overall is very easy reading and I would certainly recommend to fans of literary romance and dramatic fiction. Oh and I love that cover!
SDecker More than 1 year ago
I didn’t think I would, but I loved this book! I didn’t want to ever stop reading, and this was almost like reading a recounting of something “real” that had happened to “real people”, and had to remind myself that it is ‘a fictional’ drama. But that is what made it so good. “Degrees of Love” wastes no time in getting to the ‘inciting incident’ where Susan is living her ‘charmed’ life with Matt and their two children Jason and Micah when she gets an exciting work promotion that sends her off to NY. We already can tell things are less-than-amazing with her husband as she fantasizes of other men, but when she goes to New York and meets the sexy Reese Kirkpatrick, thing get even more complicated. Even though I was already hooked before I even finished the first chapter, once she and Reese hook up I literally didn’t want to stop reading until the last page. Sometimes her back and forth was a little wearisome and for some reason I didn’t really ‘buy’ some of the fights she had with Reese (but I did with her and Matt) but for the most part Slabach does a great job of creating a believable backdrop, wherever the story is happening. I was curious to see how it would all tie up because things just keep getting crazier and complicated, but it does quite nicely (no spoilers!) even though I was disappointed when it was all over. I wanted to read more! Well done.
CodyBCB More than 1 year ago
oh wow, I loved this book and read the whole thing in one week, which is fast for me, especially considering I have no free time to read these days! But it just seemed to go by so fast and I never wanted to stop reading it, even late into the evening. I was mesmerized by the world Lisa Slabach creates, one so realistic and authentic and dramatic, yet something I’ve never really read about before because I generally stick to mysteries/thrillers and suspense. But for some reason I thought this seemed interesting and see a bird’s-eye view into lives that are affected by an affair and what it can do to shatter the illusion of the ‘perfect’ family or life. Thought was really interesting to put us in the heroine’s shoes as she struggles with herself over her needs, desires and responsibilities – and eventually facing some hard truths that may not be what we expect. Too much happens in this book to cover properly in a short review so you really just have to read it for yourself… you will not be disappointed!
essieh More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars this was a totally unexpected delight for me, to be honest from the description I wasn’t really sold, only because I felt like I could already guess the storyline and the ending without even reading it. But then I realized that I had never actually read a romance novel where the heroine (who we are supposed to root for) was married and had an affair – something that I disapprove of--- so I wanted to see how that would translate into a readable story for me – if I could connect or not. So I read the sample, and then was impressed by the writing, so I decided to dive right in and see where the story took us. Well I wasn’t disappointed at all, in fact I think that “Degrees of Love” is by far one of the more flat out interesting and addicting books I’ve read in a while. I like how it felt like we were so involved in the story from the beginning, and really feel this intimate connection with Susan ---we see what she sees, feel what she feels. I liked how Slabach writes very descriptively and with great passion and authenticity. I kept wondering how it would all wrap up and if I’d like it, but it totally did, and was a good ending. Not usually a fan of the ‘quick recap in the future’ technique, but it did work well here and gave me an unexpected smile. Would like to read more from Lisa Slabach.
GillianH More than 1 year ago
it has been a long while since I have found a book that I wanted to read slowly so that I could soak in every detail in hopes that the last page seems to never come. When reading the synopsis of this novel, I never imagined that I would feel this connected to a story like this – to be honest the description seemed a little cliché and melodramatic, but I was wrong! This novel was so much more (and better) than the description states. The idiosyncrasies of each character are so well defined (especially Susan) and expressed in such ways that come across as if you are there in the scenes with them, and I found myself withholding judgment even in situations where I felt disapproval – by the end I see it was all part of the process of her emotional journey towards her new truth. Such a whirlwind of emotions and surprising events that keeps us hooked throughout, and characters that we can somewhat relate to even if they are in circumstances different from ours, or doing things that are ‘wrong’. There is just so much more to the story, and relationships, like life, can be messy and complicated. An emotional, heart wrenching and ultimately triumphant (if not bittersweet) journey of love and life not soon forgotten, and one I will recommend to my family and friends.
SBEACHER More than 1 year ago
I read this book by Lisa Slabach and found myself completely transported to the story, completely forgetting where I was. A dramatic, compelling romance that has more substance and heart than many others I’ve read lately, and I have to say that for once I am glad that these aren’t ‘idealized’ characters (although Reese is to some degree). I like that Susan is smart and successful on her own, and when this becomes too much for her husband to handle, she doesn’t just sit and take it, but she does struggle with the burden of family and trying to keep everything together. Much of their relationship is shown in current time, but we are also given more of their backstory as the book goes on, so that it is easier to understand some of Susan’s choices, even though some may frown upon them. It is her path and her development. Way too much to delve into here, but Slabach’s skill with story and prose will captivate readers looking for their next great read.