Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Long Way Home by HelenKay Dimon (Adult Romance)

* * 1/2

The Hanover brothers are trying to live down the con-man reputation of their late father. But they can’t blame their father for all their problems in life—or in love

Callen Hanover has led a tough life. But after years of roaming, he’s finally settled back home in Sweetwater to reunite with his brothers, and rebuild Shadow Hill, his grandmother’s crumbling home. The last person he expected to see at his door was Grace Pruitt—ex-girlfriend and partner to the FBI agent who’s determined to put Callen away.

Grace Pruitt is in town to save the two men she cares about the most—her former partner who seems to be on a downward spiral, and Callen, the man who ran before she could explain who she really was…or tell him some shocking news. Can the secrets of the Hanover family’s past be just the thing to save them all? Or is it already too late?


One night after meeting each other, Callen Hanover and Grace Pruitt move in together.  There were together for 4 months before Callen decided Grace had betrayed him and walked out without caring to really listen to anything she had to say.

Although I’m not a big “love-at-first-sight” fan, I DO enjoy reading about relationships that begin with an instant connection.  It may not be love YET but something is bringing our hero and heroine together in a way that will lead to a happy ever after.  And even though we don’t see those first 4 months first-hand, Long Way Home still manages to deliver the instant-connection-to-love story line.  But…there was something about this story really ruined it for me. 

That something is our hero, Callen.  He is a hot mess.  And not in a sexy way.  Early on the reader learns that during their four months together Callen was a heavy drinker with a very short temper.  And when I say heavy drinker I mean he was drinking 24 hours a day; even getting up in the middle of the night to drink.  Apparently Grace insisted he stop drinking.  He does.  His temper improves but isn’t non-existent.  Which is proven when and he just walks out during an argument.  He doesn’t stop to listen or to talk things out.  He just LEAVES.  He’s willing to go through the tremendous effort of sobering up for her but god forbid he have a conversation to save their relationship.

Fast forward 3 months later.  Callen left no trace; even changing his phone number so Grace can’t find him.  But she does find him.  In Oregon, helping his brothers sort out the house and legacy their con-artist father left behind.  Callen is still sober but he also continues to be uncommunicative.  When he is communicating it is to accuse Grace of lying (she’s not and has never given him a reason to think so), he’s exceedingly moody and ridiculously paranoid about everything.  He lacks self esteem. And he still runs away from everything. All I could think was that this guy needs serious therapy before continuing a long term relationship. 

The reason I gave this 2 1/2 stars is because the writing kept my interest and Callen seemed to have SOME redeeming qualities considering he didn't run away when he found out he was going to be a dad. And as I said before, he's a runner. The fact that he didn't run showed a little bit of character growth. Just not enough to make me feel anything other than a tremendous need to send him to a therapist. And Grace? Her desire to make Callen understand he's worth more than he realizes is commendable. But his issues are deep and messed up and the fantasy that she can fix him all on her own is too far fetched. Did I already mention that this guy needs a therapist?  Well, I’m suggesting it again.  This hero was TOO broken.  And had the story addressed that issue further rather than trying to portray love and romance as a fix-all, I would have been more forgiving and more interested. 


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