Published: April 25, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Obtained via: Publisher
Reviewed by name and email address: Gina Ginalrmreviews@gmail.com
Ali Marshal has loved one man her whole life.
Well, that’s not exactly true. Ali has the capacity to give fully and completely of her love to anyone who comes into her orb and most especially she loves her family. Even though her mother, Gail, and sister, Bridget, left her behind following her parents’ divorce, she still has the capacity to love them. Even though time and time again Gail and Bridget have stolen the moment, every gold moment, from Ali. But there has always been one man she has not only loved, but has been deeply in love with…and once upon a time Bridget took him from her too.
Now Ali has a chance for something that will be totally hers. Her moment. A piece of her sculpture is in the running to be in Architectural Digest. This would be the pinnacle of her career. Thrilled for her, her father, Marty plans a celebratory dinner. When she arrives though, it is to find Gail and Bridget there…to celebrate their own news. Bridget is getting married, again. That’s all well and good, but there is the issue of Bridget once being married to the love of Ali’s life, Bradley Hawk. When Hawk also shows up, Ali does what she does best—she rescues him by planting a major kiss on him.
Hawk may have been divorced from Bridget, but he hasn’t left the Marshal family. Nor has he left Ali, someone he considers to be his best friend. When he realizes that once again Bridget has stolen Ali’s moment from her he steps up and along the way realizes that it’s been Ali all along who has held his heart. But given the Marshal family dynamics, is it enough?
I’m one of those people who has to read a series in order. Even with a solid backstory, I need to read a series start to finish—you never know if there will be a key piece in the earlier books and, if a series is really, really good, you just don’t want to miss one story. When I was offered the opportunity to read Marina Adair’s FEELS LIKE THE FIRST TIME I had to pick up LAST KISS OF SUMMER to read first. I wasn’t much impressed by LAST KISS OF SUMMER—the characters were two dimensional and the story came across as kind of juvenile. It left me wondering if I should go ahead and read FEELS LIKE THE FISRT TIME FOR REVIEW. I am glad I did.
Ali is a wonderfully written, complex and multi-dimensional character. Her growth in a relatively short time, the emotions she brings to the story are wonderfully done. I did struggle a bit with how she still, after being dumped on by Gail and Bridget yet again, was able to rise above and find a way to finally give to herself while still being herself. Ali is a giver—she’s one of those people who give and give and give – even when it is costing themselves their own happiness. Adair did a tremendous job of showing how Ali was finally able to give to, with Hawk beside her, give to herself.
Likewise, Hawk went through some well-constructed changes in the book. He and Ali are, in many ways, two sides of the same coin which makes them a well-matched set.
I never did warm up to Bridget—probably because I’ve met my fair share of “Bridgets in my life. They are the self-centered, “it’s all about me all the time” people we’ve all met. As far as I’m concerned there is nothing redeeming about the Bridgets of the world. I really wanted her to get a kick in the teeth at some point, but Adair went a different way—a way that showed Ali at her best. I suspect because Bridget has elected to stay in Destiny Bay she’ll be getting her own story at some point which, even though I don’t particularly like her, I will read because I DO like the other characters.
FEELS LIKE THE FIRST TIME is definitely one book you will want on your summer reading list.
This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.