The past will always be between them
He swore he'd never return home. Then a flat tire lands Dean Presley back in Grass Lake, Tennessee, and he's forced to confront the woman he left behind. Faith Stratton was once the love of his life. Now her gifted brother could be the rising Nashville star Dean needs for his struggling music label. But it means taking Sawyer away from the horse therapy farm that Faith's so proud of. That won't be easy, especially since those old feelings that started all the trouble Well, let's just say he can't go back there, because he doesn't want to relive the memories of the terrible accident that drove them apart.
|Series:||Grace Note Records , #1|
|File size:||3 MB|
About the Author
Amy Vastine has been plotting stories in her head for as long as she can remember. An eternal optimist, she studied social work, hoping to teach others how to find their silver lining. Now, she enjoys creating happily ever afters for all to read. Amy lives outside Chicago with her high school sweetheart-turned-husband, three fun-loving children, and their sweet but mischievous puppy dog. Visit her at www.amyvastine.com
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Everyone processes grief in a different way. Faith has lost so much in her young life and is just trying to hold it all together, to survive until next day, clinging on to those dear to her heart and still there for her. She wants to keep everyone happy so that no one else would end up in an accident, and leave too early while angry with her. Dean escaped his grief, sorrow, and loss, and swore he would never return. Life happens, and he suddenly has to not only face Faith again, but his own responsibility with the events in the past, his grief, and his parents. The story focus on the process both Faith and Dean go through, to cope with the past, and to get a handle on the grief still inside and burning from years of guilty feelings and remorse. I had a hard time with Faith, I'll admit that. The codependency she had developed to her brother, her trying to manipulate, influence, and shape her brother's life, the selfish attitude about him succeeding on his own, and 'leaving her behind' all went a little far. I understand she had had tremendous losses in her life, still vulnerable after her father's passing, but to go behind her brother's back, nope. I think she went way too far with her acting up, and I was frustrated with her for the second half of the story. The lack of communication, not sharing some important information with the rest of the family, that would have saved all the characters involved years of pain and sorrow, was another point of chagrin for me. If everything was solved with one conversation, why wasn't that conversation had years ago?! Obviously, I truly got into the tale and got emotionally involved, since the story managed to get such a reaction from me. I like how the ending shaped and the platformed it made for the future series. The journey Dean and Faith had to take to get there wasn't without growing pains and soreness. They both went through a transformation, and through that, they were able to find new chances and a new direction in their lives. A little bit like a phoenix rises from the ashes, they were able to make something beautiful, lasting, and successful out of the turmoil they both had previously been. ~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
The Girl He Used To Love is a tender-hearted, emotional and rewarding romance of fate stepping in to give two wounded people who were always meant to be together another chance at love. It’s a lesson about grief and not taking your loved ones for granted. And ultimately, at its heart, this is story of a couple finding the courage to forgive and let go so they can move forward with their lives. Twelve years ago, Dean made a decision to leave Grass Lake for good in the aftershock of his sister’s death. In a moment of intense grief, he also forsakes a young, budding romance with Faith, his sister’s best friend. Dean and Faith have since lived in different worlds - he as a part of Nashville’s exciting music scene and she back in Grass Lake running a horse therapy farm - until a flat tire on a stormy night brings Dean home again. There’s a lot to recommend this wonderful romance. The characters are heartfelt and well-developed--two likeable people you can’t help but root for to find their happiness. Plenty of emotion is at play, with Faith also mourning the recent death of her father, and Dean’s and Faith’s struggles to keep their businesses and dreams alive. I also enjoyed the flashbacks of the couple as teenagers, exploring their tender feelings, and the small town setting of Tennessee horse country. The ending was a rewarding, lovely surprise.
What a delightful book! Sassy and sweet. Great characters. Tender emotions. Engaging story. The Girl He Used to Love by Amy Vastine has it all! Faith and Dean have fantastic chemistry together, and they also have a lot of baggage between them. Namely, young love that ended twelve years ago with the tragic death of Faith’s best friend, Dean’s sister Addison. Grief and guilt and regret from the past swirl around their present and provide the setup to some very well-written and poignant moments. The scenes at the cemetery – all of them – were among my favorites for their authenticity and range of emotions. But it isn’t all angst and tenderness between Faith & Dean. There’s also a lot of truly fun banter and delicious romantic tension. The impromptu dance scene is one of my favorites – as is the mud experience. These two will put a grin on your face – guaranteed. They will also steal your heart. And ultimately, the message in The Girl He Used to Love is perhaps the most important element. Especially the examination of how grief and deep-seated guilt can take their toll on every part of our lives – relational, professional, personal – and how forgiveness of ourselves is the first step toward heart-healing. Bottom Line: Many emotions gallop through The Girl He Used to Love – grief, anxiety, guilt, regret, love, joy. Amy Vastine has crafted a story rich in tender moments and compelling characters. Wry humor and southern sass keep the book light in spite of its deep emotions, and the romance is deliciously done. Family and friendships play as important a role in the story as Faith & Dean’s relationship, creating a well-rounded novel that’s a perfect choice to read on your summer vacation! And the setting is truly lovely – the Tennessee hills feel like home to me anyway so I immediately moved in to Grass Lake with my whole heart. I’m looking forward to more in this series and from this author! (I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review)
4 1/2 STARS! In this first book of a new series "Grace Note Records", Amy Vastine introduces us to the town of Grass Lake, Tennessee. She weaves the townsfolk, culture and traditions into a cozy place that calls to us to grab a rocking chair on the front porch and settle in to enjoy! I really liked Dean and Faith's story and look forward to reading this series again. Dean Presley never intended to return home to Grass Lake, TN. The fear of all the memories living there kept him away for years. It's only the bad luck of traffic leading him off the main highway on his way back to Nashville, combined with a flat tire that has him walking into the local bar & grill looking for help. Faith Stratton never thought she'd see that face again. It's been years since Dean walked out on their young love and left her behind. The shock of seeing him again brings back a flood of memories. Dean is stuck in town for awhile and forced to address the past with Faith. They eventually find some peace, but future trouble brews on the horizon. Dean needs to sign her talented brother to his floundering record label, or he will probably go under ... but at the same time, Faith needs Sawyer to continue helping her run their horse therapy farm. Can they find their way to a happy ending