#Review of Fated Hearts by @BeckyFlade
Psychiatrist Henley Elliott fled her quiet life in Cleveland for a gypsy lifestyle, trying to stay one step ahead of her painful memories. When she breaks down in quirky little Trappers' Cove, Minnesota, she meets Sheriff Carter McAlister - a man healing from his own share of hidden heartbreaks.
At the request of a friend, Carter offers Henley a job to help her get back on her feet . . . but soon he can't resist trying to sweep the intriguing woman off them. Breaking through her carefully built shell proves to be a near-impossible task, and to make matters worse, a dangerous new presence in the Cove seems to be targeting Henley. They must learn to trust in each other in order to keep her safe.
Can Henley and Carter leave their secrets and scars in the past to get a second chance at happily ever after?
****Five "Dublin & Carter" Stars****
Henley Elliott has a lot to run from. A past, her mistakes, health issues she didn't want to face, and a family that couldn't care less as long as she wasn't embarrassing them again. Running is the only thing that feels right to her--settling down wasn't in the plans. Then her car breaks down just outside of Trapper's Cove, the kind of small-town where you're famous just by stopping into the diner for a meal. Here, Henley meets Carter McAlister, a small-town cop who once upon a time, used to be a big-time officer in Philly but with his own past to run from and his own healing time needed, found his way to Trapper's Cove, too. Neither Henley nor Carter are ready for the way each is drawn to one another, never mind the way they help push each other to be better, to heal. But the past has a way of catching up, and dangerous things are beginning to happen to Henley. Can Carter save her before it's too late?
In case you didn't know by the headline in my review, I would have given this book five stars just based on Dublin and Carter alone. Seriously, I would have. Sometimes it's hard for an author to bring in pets and show how important they are to the MC without focusing too much on that aspect, but Miss Flade did it quite well. So well, in fact, that I kept turning the pages to see the next scene between Carter and his dog. It was so real to me because I could relate with my own dogs--especially the "stupid" part, haha. So I felt I had to mention that first.
I devoured Fated Hearts in just a few short hours. Devoured it. Between Henley's secretive past, her strange but pretty cool ability (read to find out what it is, you'll get no spoilers from me) and the way you could visibly feel these characters healing one another, I couldn't put it down. Carter is a great hero--he embodies every sense of that word and he owns it, even if sometimes he doesn't feel like one.
The romance built over time, it wasn't instant and all the better for it, really. It was true to these characters and their emotional roadblocks that kept them in their own walls of safety. Opening up often means getting hurt for some. Especially these characters. They're not perfect. Flade captures the essence of being flawed but craving the desire and will to be better perfectly.
It's an amazing, suspenseful story. Fated Hearts has some great lines, an awesome plot, and characters I wouldn't mind meeting in real life. And now I am super curious about Mag's and Aidan's story in Fated Souls, especially after what we learned about them in this one.
I give this five stars all the way.