Length: 62,000 words
Cover Design: Black Jazz Design
Rented Heart Series
Rented Heart (Book #1) - Universal Buy Link
Ex-Army medic Marc Ramsey is recovering from life-changing combat injuries while pulling nights as a trauma specialist at the local hospital. Keeping busy is a habit he canít quit, but when Jamieóso wild and beautifulóbursts into his life, working himself into the ground isnít as compelling as it used to be.
?Marc falls hard, but chaos lurks behind Jamieís fragile facade. Heís winning his battle against addiction, but another old foe is slowly consuming him. Both men have weathered many storms, but the path to the peace they deserve might prove the roughest ride yet.
It's no secret to anyone that I am a HUGE fan of Garrett Leigh. Everything she writes is gold, and I don't even need to read the blurb for the book to know I'll read it ... and love it. She's never let me down, and I know going into one of her books that the characters will find their way to my heart, their story will captivate me, and along the way, I'll probably need a tissue or two. Soul to Keep was all this and more. It is the second book in the Rented Heart series but can absolutely be read as a stand-alone. There's always this certain atmosphere in one of Garrett's books, this aura of hope and a bit of melancholy mixed together that is unmistakable. It's certainly present in Soul to Keep but for me, the angst was relatively low.
Jamie Yorke was introduced in the first book of the series, Rented Heart, and his character has intrigued me ever since. A former hooker, a recovering drug addict, the deck certainly seems stacked against him. He's been in sunny California, but the cool and gray of England has been calling to him and he heads home to try to have a new start in life. He's alone and not quite sure what he's going to do when he gets there, he just knows he has to go. On the plane ride across the ocean, during a powerful bout of turbulence, Jamie is sure he's made a mistake until his seatmate comes to his rescue. And who is his seatmate? None other than Marc from Between Ghosts and yeah, I gave a mighty squee at that!
Marc Ramsey is fighting his own battle as he recovers from the partial loss of his leg due to an IED while he served in Iraq but there's something about Jamie that just calls to his desire to help and fix. After all, he's spent the past 10 years fixing his fellow soldiers on the battlefield where he served as a medic. There is a bit of an age difference between the two but it's Jamie's spirit and his quiet strength that Marc can't get enough of. Once they land in England and go their separate ways, Marc doesn't ever think he'll see Jamie again but they happen to cross paths and from that point on, Marc knows he'll do whatever he can to keep Jamie in his life. I really loved these two together. Their connection was so lovely and it's a quiet kind of intensity. Not so much sparks and fire, but more of a smoldering heat that simmers constantly below the surface. Jamie feels safe in Marc's presence, something that has been absent from his life for so long, and in turn, Jamie gives Marc a different, and welcome, perspective on life.
In true Garrett Leigh fashion, this is a wonderful hurt/comfort story with a slow burn romance that hit me all in the feels. Jamie's vulnerability and strength really got to me as well as Marc's kindness and straightforward approach to life in general. Yeah, he's lost part of his leg and has to overcome that, but he faces it with this aplomb that's pretty admirable. And on the surface, it might seem like Marc and Jamie shouldn't or won't work but they just do, and it's beautiful. Soul to Keep could have been a really heavy, somewhat depressing book given the subject matter, when in fact it's rather hopeful and light. There are deep moments, yes, but the focus is more on healing and starting over. I loved this book and you will too. Be sure to check it out!
April 3 - The Novel Approach
April 9 - My Fiction Nook
April 13 - Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, The Geekery Book Review, MM Good Book Reviews, Diverse Reader, Sexy Erotic Xciting
April 16 - OMG Reads
April 20 - Bayou Book Junkie, Reading In Sarah's Corner, The Way She Reads, Jim's Reading Room, Au Boudoir Ecarlate
Garrett's debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.
When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.
Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with photographer Dan Burgess.
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