I received a free review copy of this book through Netgalley.
My reviews can also be found on my blog.
Going into this book, I expected a typical romance. I was interested in the fact that Avery's son had autism, but I didn't think it would play a large part in the book - or be included so well. In fact, I fully expected to be disappointed.
The autism was portrayed nicely here, but that wasn't all. Being a mother in general was really captured in this story. I feel like so many novels - and maybe this is because I read mostly young adult, where parents tend to be absent - show people with children, but they don't feel like parents to me. They don't sacrifice for their kids or do anything that a "real" parent should.
Avery does. This isn't important just because Max is autistic, either, although it does mean he needs extra attention and understanding. But every child needs parents who are willing to put their lives on hold, who are going to do anything it takes for their kid. I think this book captured that wonderfully and blended it together with the love story.
I will say, once I was into the story, I predicted nearly everything. Only one thing at the end caught me off guard - and surprisingly enough, that wasn't even the part that made me cry. I did cry, though, because Avery was such a caring mother, and the way she worried for Max was touching. At one point, her father pointed out what I had been thinking throughout the book - she shielded Max too much from the real world. And her concern and her tears in that moment caused some of my own.
This book wasn't about plot, at least not for me. It was about emotion and what it's like to be a mother. It was about Max, and it was about making time for yourself - it was about Avery.
The only fault I found was the rush towards the end. It felt like too much happened at once, and it might have been better if the book were longer so things could be slowed down. That way, the characters could work through one thing at a time, and so many important events wouldn't be thrown at once toward the readers.
Really, though, that's a small thing when I think about how much I enjoyed this book. It was real and heartfelt, and I'm so glad I decided to pick it up.