Published by Rennie Road Books on July 12, 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
She’s the only one who ever loved him—and the only one he can never have. Jude lost everything one spring day when he crashed his car into an apple tree on the side of the road. A man is dead, and there's no way he can ever right that wrong. He’d steer clear of Colebury, Vermont forever if he could. But an ex-con in recovery for his drug addiction can’t find a job just anywhere.
Sophie Haines is stunned by his reappearance. After a three year absence, the man who killed her brother and broke her heart is suddenly everywhere she turns. It’s hard not to stare at how much he’s changed. The bad boy who used to love her didn’t have big biceps and sun-kissed hair. And he’d never volunteer in the church kitchen.
No one wants to see Sophie and Jude back together, least of all Sophie's police chief father. But it's a small town. And forbidden love is a law unto itself.
Steadfast (True North #2)
By Sarina Bowen
What does an evil person and a good person look like?
I thought I was an open-minded person until I readSteadfast. Unfortunately, before I’d even started reading, I’d become judge and juror and slapped a “he’s no good” sticker on Jude’s forehead. Look, I know from reading Bittersweetthat he wasn’t all bad. It’s just that I kind of found it hard to start, knowing that the hero was imperfect. Harsh I know, but I couldn’t help but question whether I’d be able to fall in love with him. Would he be weak? Could I forgive Jude for his mistakes? Is the woman of his dreams going to have to be the stronger of the two?
Well, I can honestly say that Jude was one of the strongest, bravest and kindest of hero’s that I’ve read in a long time. It would be a pleasure to know someone as strong as Jude. His woman didn’t need to be stronger, she just had to stand beside him and hold his hand. Luckily, Jude’s woman Sophie didn’t just want to hold his hand, she wanted to wrap her arms around him and hold onto him forever.
So, I started Steadfast with reservations. I’d read the teaser chapters, and while I had sympathy for Jude, I also felt that he’d made the bed he had to lay in. As the story goes on and we get to know Jude better, it’s easy to see that this guy is trying his hardest to move on from his past.
His first step after rehab was the best step. He spent a few months picking apples with the Shipley family. He grew stronger with them, but he also made great friends there too. Before he left, they made him promise to return for Thursday night family dinners. At first, he was reluctant, but soon they became the best thing about his week. That was until Jude attended his first NA meeting. Well, the meeting was not that exciting, but a chance meeting with the priest had him signing up to be a volunteer in the kitchen for Community Dinners every Wednesday night. Imagine his surprise when the love of his life is in charge.
Sophie’s a good girl but in some ways, it’s all kind of an act. One day, a long time ago she met a bad boy with tattoos who made her feel special and listened to her. It wasn’t long before the bad boy and the good girl fell in love. Unfortunately, all of their love for each other couldn’t help them when tragedy strikes. Their worlds are torn apart and for three and a half years they are separated. Now, Sophie is finishing off her degree, hoping to get full-time work, looking after her parents and volunteering at Community Dinners every Wednesday night. Imagine her surprise when the love of her life comes back…to peel and chop potatoes.
The journey for Sophie and Jude is not easy. There are mountains to cross for them to be even on the same page. I never doubted that they would find their way back mind you, as it was obvious that they loved each other. Will their past always be in their way, or would they finally see the light at the end of the tunnel? Jude is determined to stay clean especially now that Sophie wants to be a part of his life. Sophie will do anything to support Jude because he is the only man who has ever held her heart. She trusts him and hopes that one day Jude will learn to trust himself.
I loved Steadfast and even though it made me cry like a baby, it still gave me heart flutters, smiles and blushes. There was one teeny weeny part where I thought…Geez, I hope I’m not going to be crying through the whole bloody book but those sad parts made the good parts even better.
The True North series is completely addictive. I love the Shipleys and all the other characters who have come to the table on Thursday night. Zach, the quiet giant is up next and I can’t wait for his story.
On the outside, Jude is a bad boy. On the inside, he is trying to be a better man. In some ways, it’s for himself but in a lot of ways he wants to be better for Sophie.
So here we have a bad boy who has turned out good.
On the outside, Sophie’s father, the police chief, is a good man. On the inside he is despicable. I never got the impression that he was trying to change. He didn’t seem to want to be a better man.
So here we have what appeared to be a good man acting like a bully and a brute.
On the outside, the drug dealer looks bad. He doesn’t want to be a better man and does evil things to reinforce that.
On the outside Denny is a good man…a little dorky, but still good. He has the best intentions and makes decisions to see other people’s lives improve. His decisions can make his life harder, but he takes it on the chin.
Good can look like evil and evil can look like good.
Good can look good and evil can look evil.
Steadfast has given me a great reminder that we sometimes have to look below the surface to find the good and the bad in people.