This book was BRILLIANT!
From beginning to end, I was captivated.
Violet Winters wakes up in dead of night to loud, obnoxious music. She goes over to her neighbor's house to tell them to lower the music, and that's where she meets the sexy and scarred Joe Callahan.
The action starts right from the beginning and it is hot
. There's no easing into a relationship or an established friendship before they start going at it. As much as I loved how different KA started At Peace, I was a little worried that there wasn't going to be as much as an emotional connection as there was a physical one. I was totally WRONG
Violet Winters is a widowed, single mother. You can tell she's an independent, strong women. Her husband was murdered and you could just feel
her utter devastation. However, she didn't let her grief consume her and knew she still had a life to lead.
Joe Callahan was as alpha-male as they get. In the beginning, I thought he was a complete bastard but, in the end, he redeemed himself. He had some inner demons to work on, and the fact that he wasn't perfect made everything much more beautiful.
Although the physical aspect of their relationship starts in the beginning, their connection doesn't start until later on in the book. The build was slow, but in no way lagging. Joe did have some major screw up moments. I just wanted to reach in there and slap some sense into him. “Nothing can fill you up,” she stated.
“Nope,” he agreed again.
“You won’t let it.”
“Barrel’s got a hole in the bottom, buddy, everything leaks out no matter how much you pour in.”
She was silent a moment then she whispered, “Right.”
She turned to the door and his hand gripped his bourbon so hard he had to focus everything on loosening his grip or the glass would shatter.
Before she opened it, she turned back. “You don’t know, Cal, you have no idea.
You’ve shut yourself up for so long in this fucking house with your tragic memories, you have no idea what’s about to walk out your door. Kate, Keira and me, we could have plugged that hole. We could have filled you so full, you’d be bursting. We would have loved that chance. We’d have given it everything we had, no matter the time that slid by, graduations, weddings, grandbabies, you’d have been a part of us and we’d have given everything we had to keep you
so full, you’d be bursting.”
Cal didn’t reply.
“Joe,” she whispered, “you let me walk out this door, you’ll lose your chance.”
Cal didn’t move.
Cal stayed seated.”
What really brought tears to my eyes was his relationship with Violet's two daughters. He didn't want to replace their old dad, but wanted to make a new place for himself. Joe feels and treats them like they were his own and reading that was extraordinary. “You’re mine, the girls are mine. I’m stakin’ my claim with you right now and, you force it, I’ll do it with him too.”
I was ready to just burst into tears at that point.
Violet was also able to take Joe into her heart. She didn't want to replace her dead husband and didn't have to. She took a chance with Joe and let herself find love again. “You talk about Cal [Joe], you look like a woman who's talkin' about the man she needs to breathe.”
Of course, it isn't a KA book if, near the end, the shit doesn't hit the fan and in At Peace the shit hit the fan
. It was intense and I was devouring the pages, dying to know how everything was going to turn out. And there was a whopping epilogue. KA's epilogues never fail to leave you smiling and with that warm, fuzzy feeling.
At Peace was a fantastic read!