Reminders of Him is a heartbreaking, gut-wrenching, impossible to put down type of love story that will leave you thinking about it nonstop after finishing. The two main characters who are clearly in love and desperate to be together face an impossible situation, where both must confront the devastating hurt and guilt of their pasts and find a way to move forward with forgiveness and hope.
Kenna Rowan is 26 and she spent the last 4 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter. After an evening of bad decisions, Kenna was driving the vehicle that wrecked, leaving her boyfriend Scotty dead. In the aftermath of the accident and during the trial, Kenna barely had time to grieve for her love, Scotty, who was full of kindness, love, and a zest for life.
Now she has saved enough money to move from transitional housing and get her own apartment in Scotty’s hometown. Besides securing a job, which won’t be easy with her record, her one goal is simple – to see her daughter, Diem. Because she gave birth while incarcerated four years ago, Kenna never even was able to see her daughter, let alone hold her. She knows that she has absolutely no parental rights, and that she is at the mercy of Scotty’s parents, who are Diem’s legal guardians. But Kenna isn’t giving up hope to be able to lay her eyes on her own daughter at least one time.
Upon arriving in town, Kenna goes to the local bar, using her middle name “Nichole,” where she feels an instant connection with the bartender who keeps an eye on her every move. He’s hot, attentive, and seems interested in her. But everything that could possibly happen between them comes to an abrupt, painful halt when Kenna hears his name, Ledger. Scotty’s lifelong best friend. Ledger Ward, former pro NFL player for the Broncos, now owns the local bar, Ward’s. He spends his days working and taking care of Scotty’s daughter, Diem, in the best way he can, with unshakable love and protection. Ledger never met Kenna while she was dating Scotty, so he has no idea that the beautiful girl in his bar is also the same girl he should hate for taking the life of his best friend. After the initial shock of meeting Ledger, Kenna realizes that he may be the path to seeing her daughter. But fate intervenes, and soon her secret is found out. Ledger is completely torn between his love for Diem and Scotty’s parents (who are like parents to him, as well), and his concern for Kenna and her own grief. How is it fair that the one person he loves the most (Diem) and the person he is supposed to hate (Kenna) are all he cares about? Unless he can make a miracle happen, Ledger knows he won’t be able to keep them both in his life. Scotty’s parents are too wrapped up in grief and anger to even consider letting Kenna lay eyes on Diem. How will Ledger handle this impossible situation to be with the two people he loves the most?
I cried throughout the final quarter of this book. Ledger’s heart is so big, and he is such an amazing Dad figure to Diem. It is truly heartbreaking to watch his heart being ripped in two different directions. Kenna also makes friends with a neighbor girl who goes by Lady Diana. She is a teenager with Down Syndrome, and she takes a liking to Kenna. I love their friendship and light-hearted rapport in the midst of such heartbreak, grief, and sadness surrounding Ledger and Kenna. But with all of the sadness, there is also an undeniable, unwavering thread of attraction and love. I truly think this is Colleen Hoover’s best work yet. The characters are so real and well written. It’s a wonderful reminder that everyone deserves a second chance, and not to judge others because we never know the details of their daily battles. I read this in one sitting. I literally could not stop. Chef’s Kiss!
Thank you to Montlake Romance & Amazon Publishing for the early review copy of this book. @Ashley, you are the true MVP!