Then There Was You

Then There Was YouThen There Was You by Kara Isaac
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Bellbird Press on June 7, 2017
Pages: 343
Also by this author: Close to You, Can't Help Falling

 

Publisher’s Summary

Would you give up everything for a life you hate with the person you love?

Paige McAllister needs to do something drastic. Her boyfriend can’t even commit to living in the same country, her promised promotion is dead on arrival and the simultaneous loss of her brother and her dream of being a concert violinist has kept her playing life safe and predictable for six years. Things need to change. A moment of temporary insanity finds her leaving her life in Chicago to move to Sydney, Australia. There she finds herself, against many of her convictions, as a logistics planner for one of Australia’s biggest churches, and on a collision course with her boss’s son.

Josh Tyler fronts a top-selling worship band and is in demand all over the world. But his past failed romantic relationships almost destroyed both his reputation and his family. He’s determined to never risk it happening again. The last thing he needs is some American girl tipping his ordered life upside down. Especially one who despises everything he’s ever worked for and manages to push every button he has.

When Josh and Paige are thrown together to organize his band’s next tour, the sparks fly. But can they find a way to bridge the differences that pull them apart? Or will they choose the safety and security of what they know over taking a chance on something that will require them to risk everything?

When I first read the premise of Then There Was You, I thought it would be cute. I was counting on a sweet story with a bit of humor as well. While it certainly is cute, sweet and humorous, this story was so much more than I first thought. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about a story in which a mega church plays a big role, but the characters come across as real people, flaws and all. The setting is also superbly written. I felt transported to Australia, and New Zealand, and it was fun to experience everything from Paige’s American perspective and how that compared to Josh’s Australian perspective. The slight differences in wording, and particularly a sustained joke that Paige falls for, made this a really pleasurable part of the book.

I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about a story in which a mega church plays a big role, but the characters come across as real people, flaws and all.

The opening scene pulled me in so quickly, and I really appreciated how the details of Paige’s past are revealed layer by layer. The plot moves steadily, giving the reader time to invest in the characters, while also adding a believability to the friendships and relationships that develop over the course of the story. Everything is revealed in an organic way that feels natural to the story, and I always felt like I was learning what I needed to know about her as needed to keep the story going. When she meets Josh, the sparks fly. Assumptions and miscommunication abound, but I never felt like there was a clichéd moment between the two of them. Their interactions are full of attempts to dislike each other, but also full of hilarious back-and-forth banter. Overtime they learn that their pre-conceived notions of one another might not be as black and white as they first believed. As they decide to give themselves and one another grace, the reader is reminded to do the same for both themselves and others.

Assumptions and miscommunication abound, but I never felt like there was a clichéd moment between the two of them.

As touched on above, there are emotional, heartfelt spiritual truths found in this story. In addition to giving and receiving grace, both Paige and Josh have things in their past that color their thoughts about themselves. The healing realizations they come to throughout the course of the story are a joy to read. As always appreciated in a romance novel, their healing doesn’t depend on each other, but rather on their own personal growth and development, which makes for a deeply authentic read.

As always appreciated in a romance novel, their healing doesn’t depend on each other, but rather on their own personal growth and development, which makes for a deeply authentic read.

Then There Was You checks all of my boxes for a contemporary read – the romance is utterly adorable, the character development is spot on, and the spiritual truths are real and poignant. While I haven’t read all of Kara Isaac’s books just yet, this is easily my favorite so far. I’ll have my eyes peeled for what comes next, and it’s a priority for me to read her debut novel as soon as I can. Highly recommended!

One Comment

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *