Date Finished: March 14, 2023
Published: September 18, 2018
Pages: 266

Book Synopsis:

After the death of his wife, Tanner Rowe takes a step toward making her dream come true and buys the house with the dilapidated barn she’d been inexplicably drawn to in the picturesque Upper Peninsula. But after a year, he still can’t get past his grief long enough to make the repairs he’d promised.

Recently out of prison, Cole Lachlan has little to his name. Homeless, broke, and without many options as a felon, Cole heads to Red Bluff with hopes of a second chance. There he meets Tanner, whose loneliness mirrors his own, and soon Cole is trading room and board for rebuilding the burned-out barn on Tanner’s property that hasn’t been touched in seventy years.

Turns out, the barn holds more secrets than either of them could have imagined. After unearthing a hidden journal from 1948, Cole and Tanner spend their evenings poring over the pages, reading about a young man pining after his best friend. The deeper they delve into this forbidden affair from the past, the more Cole and Tanner’s own relationship shifts—from acquaintances to friends…to undeniable attraction.

But as they begin to deal with the newness of falling in love in the wake of Tanner’s loss and Cole’s past, they also become more determined to unravel the mystery of the young lovers who’ve captured their hearts, the rumors about the fire, and what really happened that fateful night.

*TW: Homophobia

My Review:

Man. This book was written beautifully. It’s one where every aspect of the story touches your soul. It was such an emotional journey, moments where you couldn’t help the smile that spread across your face or the tears that ran down your cheeks. Tom, Charlie, Tanner, and Cole. The way their stories are linked was one I’ll remember for a long time. I think the part that resonates so much with me is that the occurrences in this story could be the lives of so many people, past and present. And that reality is both heartbreaking and heartwarming. This story is captivating from the first page to the last, and I’m so glad I found it. I would recommend this in a heartbeat.

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