This is the first book I read by Rebecca Miller, though I have to admit I read it because she was a friend first. I had no idea she wrote until she plainly said, "I write." And then I was curious. I love to read, so I read.
Perhaps it is the stigma of writers who self publish, but my expectations for this book were relatively low. I mainly wanted to read it because a friend wrote it. I ended up loving it and being impressed that someone could write a full novel that held my attention through the end, and then publish it. And then sell copies!
This story had me at page one. I love when I open a book and I instantly have questions that need to be answered. They eat at me like a gnawing hunger. Casey Russo had a past, a reason for being at the point in her in life in which she was excited but nervous about a new job and building a new life. And then we meet the members of the fictional band Quintessential, who are lovable and interesting, each in their own way. I find myself digging through each member, trying to differentiate them, one from another. I instantly know that it's Michael that Casey will fall for, and then I am concerned, because we all know the reputation of musicians. It's exciting, almost nail bitingly exciting to read the blossoming of the relationship between Casey and Michael, the trials and tribulations of their pasts colliding and how they adjust to each other, his expectations and her fears creating one big mess.
Rebecca often writes that many romances are predictable. Boy meets girl, girl and boy like each other, boy and girl fall in love and end up together. Once in awhile there is a twist, and boy and girl don't end up together... even that is predictable. What makes the difference then, is how the story is told. Rebecca tells the story plainly, letting that path of the plot make its own way. This story has great pacing, realistic dialog, and an obvious chemistry not only between the members of the fictional band members but between her love interests.
I'm happy that I have this in eBook form, because I tend to read books over and over and over, until they fall apart in my hands. I've read this one twice already and as long as digital format upholds, it'll be around for me to read again and again.
This is the first book in the Quintessential Series. The second is Save Me, whose review is coming. I am slowly rereading it. I am (not so patiently) awaiting Coming Home, the third in this series and the books that follow.
It's a pleasure calling Rebecca a friend, a confidante, and an inspiration.