Goodreads Rating: 4.52/ 5 stars
My Rating: ★★★★★ / 5 stars
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: August 18th 2020
Publisher: Self published
Nine years ago, Emery Saunders moved to Hartwell to start her life over as a bookstore owner. Her inability to trust people made it hard for her to find a place in the small community until Jessica Lawson moved to town and befriended the shy beauty.
But there was one person in Hartwell who tried to befriend Emery long before Jessica arrived…
Jack Devlin has his secrets. One of them is that he fell hard for Emery the moment she appeared in Hartwell. Another is that his father blackmailed him into covering up a dark family tragedy. It forced Jack to sever his relationships to protect the people he cared about. Yet, staying away from Emery has not been easy throughout the years and he hasn’t always succeeded. When Jack’s mixed signals hurt Emery once again, she puts him out of her heart for good.
Until the Devlin family secret is finally revealed, freeing Jack from his father’s machinations. What Jack wants more than anything is to repair his relationships, starting with Emery.
However, Emery isn’t ready to forgive and Jack’s not ready to give up.
And when the town’s latest scandal ties Jack and Emery together, Jack is not above using their new reality to prove to Emery once and for all that their love is worthy of the legend of Hart’s Boardwalk.
ARC kindly provided in exchange for an honest review.
It takes a while to collect my thoughts on how much I love The Truest Thing. I’ve a read a lot of romance stories that stirred my heart and soul and this book will forever be close to my heart. At two o’clock in the morning, I have a book hangover and I don’t know what to read next.
Among the heroines in Hartwell Boardwalk series, Emery Saunders is my favorite and I’m DYING to read her story ever since this series began. She’s a bookstore cafe owner and Bailey’s opposite — introvert, shy and awkward. People don’t know how to interact with her because she’s a conservative and quiet woman. Behind the shyness is a lonely lady who grew up in a wealthy family but she neither feels the love and affection from them. Moving to Hartwell is a fresh start until she meets Jack Devlin, the guy whom she had a crush on.
Everyone thinks Jack Devlin is bad news. His family has a horrible reputation in town for all the shadiness, blackmailing and other antagonistic stuff they did. Admittedly, Jack made a lot of mistakes that torn bridges. That includes betraying his best friend, Cooper Lawson and hurting the woman he likes for nine years. He did it to protect the people he cared from his father and brothers. Something awful happened that forced him to work for his father and do the dirty deeds. He is an anti-hero and often misunderstood. Still, the guy has goodness in his heart especially for Emery.
Jack and Emery have a FANTASTIC character development. Once you get to know Emery, she is full of surprises. She’s quite mysterious but she’s fierce, classy and witty. I’m so proud of her being braver and more confident about herself. I love how she sees goodness in Jack and taught him a lot when it comes to forgiveness, love and trust. It’s impossible to hate her. I love her so much and I’m emotional she found a family in Hartwell when her own kin failed her. I’ll protect her at all cost.
As for Jack, my goodness. He’s the sweetest! He’s so head over heels with Emery and HE. HAD. TO. WORK. FOR. IT. He GROVELED to regain her trust. He’s affectionate, attentive and patient. I’m living for the slowburn / crush-to-lovers romance stories like this. It’s top tier and I can’t stop fangirling! These characters had a rough journey and the epilogue is dreamlike. Beautiful and heartwarming. I SWOONED HARD.
Without a doubt, Samantha Young writes blissful and emotionally driven stories. She outdone herself with The Truest Thing and I couldn’t ask for more. Years of waiting for this book is worthwhile.
My Playlist for The Truest Thing:
1. Sunrise – Norah Jones
2. Crush – Yuna ft. Usher
3. Terrified – Katharine McPhee ft. Zachary Levi
4. Need You Now – Lady Antebellum
5. Come Inside of My Heart – IV of Spades
6. I Knew You Were Trouble – Taylor Swift
7. Unwell – Matchbox 20
8. The Reason – Hoobastank