Lauren Booker did not endear herself to me with her appearance in book one of this series, Don’t Cry for Me. She upset my girl, Josie, and I don’t forgive anyone who does that. I knew Rachel Lacey would work her magic and I would end up forgiving her, but I didn’t expect that she would touch my heart more than any of Rachel’s other characters. Maybe it’s because we have something very painful in common or it may just be because I love how Lauren is determined to make things right. And given how life has continuously knocked her down, I appreciate how she keeps getting back up and moving forward.
Mia Solano is also at a crossroads. She recently left her successful law career, got divorced and opened a cat cafe. She knows she needs to get back to living and meets up with her online friends to watch the new season of their favorite show. Mia is pretty perfect. I love how she carries herself and the calm she projects, even if internally her mind is racing. What impresses me the most about Mia is how she looks beyond Lauren’s issues and really “sees” her.
With She’ll Steal your Heart, Rachel Lacey continues to show why she is so successful and one of our best writers. In Lauren, she gives us a character I will be thinking about for quite a while. She is flawed but given her history, the fact she is still standing, shows the strength she has inside. Rachel writes her characters with such care, as if they are fragile friends, she just wants to hold close. The romance that develops is years in the making, while the two chat online about their favorite tv show and Mia reads Lauren’s fanfic. They share details about their lives and when they finally meet, the feelings that have been developing over years evolve so naturally.
This is the fourth book in the series and it was lovely to see some familiar faces make appearances. While I have a special place in my heart for Don’t Cry for Me, this is my favorite of the series. It made me tear up several times because things hit a bit close to home but more than anything it made me feel hopeful and it made me smile a lot. I love to see characters overcome adversity to find happiness and experience growth both individually and as a couple. This is a book I will revisit many times.
An ARC was received from the author for an honest review.