Author: Tessa Teevan

Words I Couldn’t Say by Tessa Teevan

Words I Couldn’t Say by Tessa TeevanWords I Couldn't Say by Tessa Teevan
Series: Promise in Prose #1
Published by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform on November 2nd 2016
Pages: 215
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three-stars

You know the old adage "if you love something, set it free?" It's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. The dumbest thing I've ever done. I loved her. I lost her. Hell, I let her go. And then spent five miserable years without her. To cope with the loss, I put pen to paper and wrote her a love story, knowing when she was ready she'd hear the words I couldn't say all those years ago. Turned out, not only would she hear them, but when Hollywood came calling, I made sure she got the lead role. After all, no one else could portray the character whom she'd inspired. Now she's within arms' reach and finally, she'll know the truth in my heart. Because that other cliche, "Actions speak louder than words?" I'm going to prove it. My words may have brought Ava Banks back into my life; I have to be enough to make her stay."

There’s something sweet about the boy (or the girl) next door type stories, but now with a bit more than the teenage angst thrown in. Gun-shy now, Tucker Manning’s hesitation when wanting to move forward with Ava Banks is understandable as he keeps his eyes on the present. Afraid to plan for a future, it’s up to Ava to convince him that she is worthy of her trust after an incident five years ago derailed their plans to have the romance that’s just like Jeremy’s and Sierra’s.

So the Banks family returns in all its glory and I’d never been happier.

It did take a while for me to start this story because it’s a preference of mine to keep brilliant pairings frozen in time so that they’ll be remembered for their perfection, and I’m glad I succumbed. As odd as it is to read about a fantastic pairing all grown up with children who are now falling in love, I loved the little inserts of Sierra’s and Jeremy’s ever-lasting affection for each other as seen from their children’s eyes; they’re just as hilarious now as they had been even after they’ve settled into married bliss and raising their children while still starry-eyed in love.

Yet my love-hate relationship with second chances rears its ugly head again when my trigger response is to root for the wronged party. As much as I liked Ava admitting the stupid blunder she’d made by giving Tucker up, I detested the platitudes that came after that regret was expressed—that time apart was perhaps a necessity—because it felt as tough excuses were simply made for a mistake that should be fully owned up to. But hard, cynical and jaded as I am, I actually felt that Tucker was too easy on Ava, a girl who’d essentially walked away and stayed away without the least bit of empathy for the dire family situation he’d found himself in. That he seemed to find himself in a position where he needed to hunt her down made me feel as though he deserved better, but it was gratifying to learn that Ava—despite several TSTL moments—did seem genuinely determined not to let Tucker go again.

There is much to like about Ava/Tucker nevertheless—their devotion to each other mirrors Jeremy’s and Sierra’s stalwart relationship—but don’t quite hold a candle to the latter still. But as I’ve written in several reviews: it’s probably just me.

three-stars

Fusion by Tessa Teevan

Fusion by Tessa TeevanFusion by Tessa Teevan
Series: Explosive #5
Published by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform on November 7th 2015
Pages: 348
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four-stars

Where do babies come from? The question every parent dreads hearing has finally fallen from the lips of six year old Ava Banks, the curious, precocious little girl that you fell in love with in Ignite. Jeremy and Sierra, normally blunt as can be, struggle to find the right words to answer her. So instead, they rewind sixteen years to that one fateful day where a game of Seven Minutes in Heaven inevitably led to life-long romance filled with laughter, love, and many, many mishaps along the way. Falling in love with your best friend? It's the most incredible thing in the world. Let's just hope it lasts. When the world comes crashing down around you, can even the strongest relationship withstand great tragedy? Stay tuned for lots of laughs, teenage awkwardness, a few tears, and most of all, mullets. Because what good love story doesn't do business in the front, and party in the back?

The high school, low-angst read of a couple that never wavers is a gratingly sweet one, albeit a fun one considering the trip down memory lane down the 90s. Jeremy’s and Sierra’s story is akin to finding out the bumps along the way of the couple you’ve always known to be the solid, unwavering one and ‘Fusion’ is pretty much that: a toothache-inducing one where declarations of love and solid friendship ground a relationship that keeps growing and changing throughout the years. The boy/girl next door story however, is quite the understated one as well and I definitely can appreciate how Teevan makes the case for the ordinary guy/girl without needing him or her to be a military hero or a highly talented billionaire or a rockstar prodigy of music to shine…and without vengeful ex-lovers complicating matters.

I’m sort of a little torn about this however; their story, despite the obstacles, felt like a straight line in a narrative that was entirely too predictable (I’d lost count of the declarative ways and metaphors one can wax lyrical about how constant their love is for each other) even though pairings such as theirs are extremely hard to come by and practically unheard of a genre that thrives on extremes at times. But there’s so much to like as well: the fidelity of pledging themselves to each other for years and then following through on it, the gradual growth where friendship turns into attraction and the way they start behaving like their own parents (!) when they finally have their own children.

Having read ‘Ignite’ so long ago and not followed up through the series, perhaps it’s time to reread that once again…through the lens of this crazy, constant couple.

four-stars