When an author's first novel is as well-written as Kayla Marie's Mended, you can be sure she's going to develop a legion of fans just waiting for her next book. What a wonderful, engaging and touching story this is...and that coming from a reviewer who is not a fan of romantic fiction!
So what makes Mended a cut above most romances? It's the author's skill at bringing her characters to life so well that readers can see and feel everything they are experiencing, be it the rush of a new love, the heartache of past trauma, or the difficulties of dealing with current issues and people in their lives. In this case, readers meet Ashley, a widow of four years, and her troubled young son, Emmett, who have just moved into the small town of Mason, Alabama. Ashley has moved here in hopes of keeping Emmett on the straight and narrow after some stints in juvenile detention in the big city.
Enter into their lives, Wade...handsome, rugged and kindly but troubled by demons he doesn't want Ashley or Emmett to know about. It doesn't take long for Ashley and Wade to be fiercely drawn to each other, but both are too afraid to tell the other how they feel. Finally getting to what they both desire takes up most of the book, but in the meanwhile, Wade's entrance into Emmett's life is the best thing that could happen for that boy.
In Mended, Kayla Marie has crafted an excellent story, with realistic characters, life-like dialogue and beautiful descriptions. Emotions run deep and readers identify with the introspection of the two protagonists. Mended is romance, but it's a lot more: it's deep, rich with homey values, and raises issues readers may well be dealing with in their own lives. Well done, Kayla Marie. Now, how long before we get to read your next book?