Stella disguises herself and flies to different cities to sleep with random men. These exploits are hot while the reader wonders why she puts herself in these situations. As the book progresses, we learn that she has conflict with her ex-husband and her teenage son as well as issues within herself due to a tragic event that messed with her happy family. She does her best to deal with these problems but there are just times when she wants to fly off to another city to pretend to be someone else. While on a business trip, she meets Matthew as herself, without being disguised. She feels an instant connection with him and opens up about issues she hasn’t shared with anyone before which leads to the beginnings of a relationship.
I liked Stella because she has been through a lot and doesn’t have time to put up with BS. She knows what she wants and she goes out there to get it. Unfortunately, her relationships at home are a different story. She does try to mend wounds with her ex-husband and son and we see her good attempts. But she is tortured and the reader realizes that she has to fix herself first.
As for Matthew, I didn’t really connect well with him. Sure, the sex was hot just as it always is in Megan Hart books but he seemed very selfish and suspect. There were times when he'd disappear and leave Stella waiting for hours especially when his needy ex-wife would come calling. His priorities were just not aligned with Stella's so it really urked me that he was so selfish and not understanding of Stella's needs. He also came off really shady and secretive who never gave Stella a straight answer when she questioned him. We soon discover his reasons for being so suspect but he didn’t redeem himself in my eyes.
By the end, I'm glad Stella let go of her grief, healed her guilt and made up with her son. She fixed some bridges with her ex husband and bonded with his new wife. She figured out what she wants and deserves. The ending leaves me wondering if she will continue down this path of self improvement or will her wounded cycle repeat itself.
There's no surprise here that Megan Hart has written an emotionally driven and realistic romance with an ending that leaves me feeling conflicted. I will settle for a “happy for now” ending even though I don't quite agree with how it ended. Some readers might be turned off by this HFN ending, but if you want truthful storytelling, then check out Megan Hart. Just don’t be surprised if everything is not tied up nicely with a bow.
* ARC provided by Harlequin MIRA via Netgalley