Tuesday, August 5, 2014



Publisher:  Berkley
Published:   June 3, 2014
ISBN:  978-0425266779
Genre:   Women’s Fiction
Format:  Paperback
Obtained via:  Publisher  
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina Gina@loveromancesandmorereviews.com


Hanna Abbott Guthrie loved her husband, Caleb, pretty much her whole entire life.  The only time she didn’t was the time before she knew him.  She wrote about what a rotten little guy he was in her diary, and how mean he was in school and then one day, he kissed her and that was it.  It wasn’t that he was mean to her…he just didn’t know how to show her he liked her—a lot.  They went off to college together and them married.  While Caleb may have had a highly successful career in hockey, he went off to the Army and to war.  And then, seven years ago, he died.  Hannah embraced the darkness that follows the death of a soul mate.  Both his and her family and friends gave her love and space and the thought that she could love again never entered her mind.

Nolan Roberts grew up with Caleb and Hannah.  He was by their side through school, Caleb going off to war and when he died.  They were the best of friends.  And then one night, at a dance at the Grange, Nolan danced with Hannah.  And then he kissed her.  He knew then he loved her as more than a friend but he also knew that Hannah still grieved with an unbearable, unending ache for the man she married.  So he continued to wait and hope and step by small step reached out to the only woman he truly wanted. 

When Caleb’s dog, Homer, nears his end, it is Nolan who is by Hannah’s side as the faithful pet crosses the rainbow bridge.  It is Nolan who holds Hannah and so begin their journey to truly find each other. 

I had a really hard time sticking with Marie Forces I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND, book 2 of her Green Mountain series because it was absolutely nothing like book 1, ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE.  The writing, while weak, was okay but I absolutely hated the story.  Yes, it is one that needs to be told and I respect her for taking it on.  It seems every contemporary romance today features an injured veteran, occasionally a widow who is in the initial days of learning to live without her husband.  But the happy ever after of true love finds its way into the characters’ lives in a steady cadence.  I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND tackles the aftermath of a beloved spouse’s death years after the fact.  It delves into the world where almost nothing will ever truly be right because the person you were supposed to spend your whole life with is gone in tragic circumstances.  Our society generally allows three days to grieve the death of a loved one and then you are supposed to move on.  I have a friend whose husband died 13 years ago and if you sat and talked with her you would think it happened last week because her grief is still so fresh.  It is not so hard to believe Caleb’s death would still be so new to Hannah.  The problem is we are reminded of it in every chapter, at least once.  I got it that she didn’t feel ready to move on.  But her constant worry about what everyone else was going to think, how they were going to react, how she’d give up the chance to love again rather than hurt her family and friends got a bit old after the first two or three tellings of it.  It turned what could have been a wonderful contemporary romance into a really depressing women’s fiction. 

I cried when I read of Homer’s passing.  I loved that they held a memorial for him.  And some of the other Abbott family members’ appearances, particular those leading to hints of future stories, added dimension to the story.  Had I not thoroughly enjoyed book 1 and saw these hints of future stories I would drop the series now. 

If you are a fan of Marie Force you will probably enjoy I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND simply because she wrote it.  But choose a time and place to read it when you can deal with a really depressing story.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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