*I received a free copy of Until it Fades from Atria Books via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *Until it Fades by K. A. Tucker
Published by Atria Books on 27 June 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Twenty-four-year-old truck stop waitress and single mother Catherine Wright has simple goals: to give her five-year-old daughter a happy life and to never again be the talk of the town in Balsam, Pennsylvania: population two thousand outside of tourist season.
And then one foggy night, on a lonely road back from another failed attempt at a relationship, Catherine saves a man’s life. It isn’t until after the police have arrived that Catherine realizes exactly who it is she has saved: Brett Madden, hockey icon and media darling.
Catherine has already had her fifteen minutes of fame and the last thing she wants is to have her past dragged back into the spotlight, only this time on a national stage. So she hides her identity. It works.
For a time.
But when she finds the man she saved standing on her doorstep, desperate to thank her, all that changes. What begins as an immediate friendship quickly turns into something neither of them expected. Something that Catherine isn’t sure she can handle; something that Catherine is afraid to trust.
Because how long can an extraordinary man like Brett be interested in an ordinary woman like Catherine…before the spark fades?
Until it Fades features an extremely hot hockey player, a single-mom waitress and a strong connection that one of them wants to keep private.
Catherine and Brett didn’t exactly meet, but at the beginning of Until it Fades, Catherine saved Brett’s life seconds after the car his friend was driving hit a tree and was on fire. She managed to leave the scene without any journalists bothering her, but when she realized that the man she saved was a famous hockey player, she felt the need to hide from the public eye. When she was still in high school, the public had judged her harshly, and she had no wish to end up with busybodies talking about her again. Ever.
Until it Fades was a beautiful story, where the past truly cast a shadow over Catherine’s present, and possibly her future as well. The most important person in her life was her daughter, Brenna, who completely seduced me – just as much as Catherine and Brett did! Catherine had a strained relationship both with her parents and most of the people in her town. She never really recovered from her high school slip-up, where she was blamed for everything, while the man in the equation got away scot free.
I found the theme of Until it Fades to be well presented, it had both to do with judging women harsher than men, and with forgiveness. I think the person who had to forgive Catherine the most was herself. Only when she realised that Brett wanted to get to know her not only because she saved his life, but because of her, she finally got more confident, and even managed to reconstruct a semblance of a relationship with her parents once more.
Until it Fades is beautifully written, even as it touches on some tough subjects, and I enjoyed how tentative Catherine was – who wouldn’t be in her situation, after all? Written in first person perspective, from Catherine’s point of view, Until it Fades made me get under Catherine’s skin, and it was really a pleasure to get to know her so well. Tucker managed to tug on my heartstrings more than once, both when it came to Catherine, her with Brenna, her with her parents, and, of course, her with Brett. Some of the story is set in the past, and that really showed what Catherine had been through in the past, and how it affected her present in every way. *sighs*
I may have wanted to escape, but then again, all these people are desperate to leave their big city lives to escape here. Maybe I’m the lucky one. Maybe there’s a way I can still make a great life for Brenna and me, here.
This man… I stare at him and think he cannot be the same man hunched in the passenger seat of that crumpled car, unconscious and bleeding profusely from his forehead. He cannot be the same man I begged and pleaded and screamed at, to please get out of the car.