Published by Self-Published on June 10, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Ruby Santos knew exactly what she was getting herself into when she signed up to write a soldier overseas.The guidelines were simple: one letter or email a week for the length of his or her deployment. Care packages were optional.Been there, done that. She thought she knew what to expect.What she didn’t count on was falling in love with the guy.
By Mariana Zapata
Some people move on from mistakes quicker than others.
OK, we all know that I’m a romantic at heart. Luckily for me, I found my own romantic hero pretty early in life. It’s a bloody good thing, to be honest. My lifestyle could have killed me. I’m not talking drugs…because drugs are bad…OK (I can still hear the teacher from Southpark saying it). I was a little reckless when it came to drinking and letting my inhibitions go. Every time I woke up after a big night, I regretted it. Did I embarrass myself? What time did I get in? Do I have any money left? Who was watching? What I was doing was dangerous. At the time, I was ashamed and thought everyone knew…everyone judged me…everyone pitied me. It’s worse when you do something really embarrassing in front of everyone…and you have to face the repercussions over and over and over again.
I really understood Ruby. Not every woman is strong and independent. Some women find it hard to stand up for themselves. There’s even quite a few women who find it easier to be sheltered than take a risk. This does not mean she’s weak or that she’s incapable of being strong. What this means is that she’s not a fan of confrontation. Sometimes it’s easier to go along with something that someone else feels passionate about, because to you, it’s not EVERYTHING. It’s easier to believe the negative comments than the positive ones. If you’re surrounded by strong, feisty and beautiful women, it’s easy to forget that you might not look the same, but you have your own type of beauty.
Ruby…was a lot like me.
The other part of Ruby that I REALLY got was her having lived through a health complication. You don’t ask for it, but all of a sudden, your family starts treating you like a kid again…and it never ends. For years my family tiptoed around me and worried about every decision I made. Unlike Ruby, I pushed those boundaries every chance I got. I wanted to scream…I’M ALIVE!! I just was a wee bit overzealous testing it.
Now, maturity and motherhood have changed me a lot. How can I teach my kids to be strong if I don’t set them a good example? Sure, I still pick my battles, but now, I can battle with the best of them.
For me, this story should have been called Dear Ruby. I really think this read a little like Women’s Fiction instead of Romance. Now, Women’s Fiction is new to me, but from what I know, WF is all about relationships, growing and coming to realise your inner strengths and weaknesses. Aaron was just a part of Ruby’s journey to happiness. Oh, I loved Aaron and thought he was an awesome hero. I really felt like I needed to know him more, though, to say that this story was based on their relationship.
This is Mariana Zapata at her slow burn finest. I thought she was actually going to leave the sexy shenanigans out completely…SHOCK HORROR!! We do get a wee glimpse, but it’s a quick blink and you’ll miss it glimpse.
I loved it…
The messages went too long at the beginning. The second half of the book was great but I really didn’t feel like I had seen the couple together long enough. The Epilogue was a little confusing and it was a little unclear where they were at. I needed a little more dialogue from Aaron to understand him better. I also felt like there were characters that I needed to know a little more about. For such a long book, the ending felt rushed.
In one of my updates, I mentioned that I think Dear Aaron would be an AWESOME movie. I want to see the characters, their pets, the costumes Ruby designed and the desert Aaron was living in. Mariana Zapata is one of my favourite authors and I will definitely keep going back for more.