My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What if we could fix one bad mistake we made when we were too young to know any better? Would you be too afraid to take a leap of faith and try? Or would you dive in head first? HELL WITHOUT YOU shows that sometimes, even when years have passed, feelings are still alive just buried deep.
Clementine has returned home after seven years away at college and graduate school. Nostalgia has her driving past places she has tried to forget but can’t seem to let go of, including her grandmother’s house. She knows someone new owns her grandmother’s house but hopes they won’t mind if she just takes a walk around. As she’s about to get into her car and leave, a truck pulls in and blocks her way. Out steps the last person she expected to see, Donovan, her ex-boyfriend. He reveals that he owns the house. She manages to escape, but rain and flash flooding land her right in a ditch. Donovan knew the weather was awful and left shortly thereafter to make sure she reached her destination safely. When he finds her walking down the road, he convinces her to come stay with him, insisting she can’t reach her destination due to the flooding.
From there starts the memories of the past and finding out what they both missed in each other’s lives. Slowly they open up and Donovan discovers why she ran away without a word and why he was never able to reach her. They both begin to realize they still have feelings for each other, but they both know that the past could come back to haunt them. Her parents hate him. She’s looking for a job three hours away. He owns a shop in town as well as her grandmother’s old house. Will they be able to overcome what life tosses at them? They’ve already learned they can’t live without each other.
I really enjoyed this book. It was nice to see characters face real situations and not circumstances that just seem too good to be true. HELL WITHOUT YOU reminds you that there are many young men in our society that enlist young and come home with problems due to being sent off to war. While HELL WITHOUT YOU only briefly touched on the subject, I feel Ranae Rose did a good job of incorporating it into the story. I wanted a little bit more in the way of details and there were a few places where the timeline jumped that seemed kind of random. Otherwise it was a great read.
✳✳ Copy provided by the author/publisher for an honest review.
✳✳ Reviewed on I ♥ Bookie Nookie Reviews by Reviewer, Leah