Dear Ms. Moon:
I saw that this book was out and kind of balked at the price. I liked the first one in the series but I never finished the second one so I hovered over the buy button. The author then offered the book for a potential review. Here’s my two cent summary. If this book was $3.99, I’d be telling everyone to buy it. At $7.99, it is a tougher call. I liked it but I want to let the reader know a few things that might affect whether this is a purchase for them.
First, the story is told in five different parts. It starts out present day when Tabitha, a best selling YA author, returns home to care for her sick mother. She ends up injured and puking out her guts when Wyatt, the town sheriff shows up.
The story then goes backward. We see how Wyatt and Tabitha first meet in third grade; Tabitha’s strong friendship with Clay (the hero of the first Batter Hearts book) and then Wyatt and Tabitha’s young adult romance. About 60% of Wyatt & Tab’s story is before the present day.
Tabitha lives with her alcoholic mother and her drug addled brother. She’s never sure whether she’ll be eating ketchup for dinner or a piece of bread. When Wyatt offers her a cookie, Tabitha wonders what he wants but she takes it because in third grade, that might be the only food she has the for the day. Wyatt’s attention is arrested by Tabitha and his devotion to her never wavers, not through elementary school or even into high school or through their long separation.
For Wyatt, the only woman (and I mean only in every way) is Tabitha. The reverse is true as well although Tabitha attempts, at times, to deter Wyatt’s interest. There young love is sweet and endearing. As Wyatt starts fighting professionally, the story follows the couple until their eventual separation. The fight scenes were fun.
I also felt that there were some great emotional punches (as Melissa from SMS Obsessions would say) such as when Wyatt tells his twin sister that love hadn’t been so kind to him and Juju replies that she just fought harder than he did.
I really enjoyed the childhood and young adult romance of Wyatt and Tab but some people prefer older protagonists. They are older by the end of the story but not for a good portion of it. They aren’t bogged down by high school concerns such as who gets to sit next to whom in the lunchroom but issues such as whether Tab and Clay have enough to eat or whether Tab is safe in her home. Plus, Wyatt’s father is the sheriff and he has to keep his relationship quiet from his family because Wyatt is certain that his father would want the relationship to end.
The major sticking point for me was the long term separation. That is not shown in the book but we know that there are thirteen years during which Wy and Tab are separated and Tab’s reasons for this are both good at the time but lose power after the years pass. Why couldn’t she have returned earlier when she knows how much she loves Wyatt and how much he loves her? The thirteen years could have been two or three or even five. I didn’t get Tab’s reasoning and that really bugged me. And conversely, I felt like Wyatt could have been more proactive. It seemed pretty obvious what was the root of their separation and that neither did anything for years and years seemed worthless.
I enjoyed this story of young love that blossomed into a lasting adult love. It was full of longing, angst, and emotion. B