K.A. Tucker’s endless imagination and ability to deliver vibrant, unconventional love stories that resonate deeply with her readers shine once again in this gripping tale of second chances and rediscovered love. Both a nostalgic summer camp romance that captures the sweet intensity of first love, as well as a hopeful story of new beginnings, it explores the very real complexities of whether a romance between two people from opposite worlds can ultimately survive in the real world. This is the kind of story that hits you right in the feels and stays with you long after it ends.
It’s been thirteen years. Does Kyle Miller remember me? Does he still think about me as I do him?
Sixteen-year-old Piper Calloway experienced many firsts during the two short months spent working at a summer camp in upstate New York—first love, first sexual experience, and everything in between—but she also faced her first heartbreak when the first boy she ever loved crushed her heart by disappearing from her life without a word. Over a decade later, that naïve, carefree young woman is long gone and in her stead stands a successful businesswoman who has not only worked tirelessly to prove herself in a traditionally male-dominated industry, but who also continues to do so every single day as she gets closer and closer to taking over her family’s real estate development firm. Her perfectly predictable life, however, is thrown into disarray when she suddenly runs into ‘the one who got away’—Kyle Miller—and finds herself haunted all over again by decade-old memories and unanswered questions.
…even after all these years, with college and boyfriends, and my career and my engagement to David, Kyle Miller has always been a sliver in my heart, a shadow in my thoughts. A lingering “what if” that I have never been able to truly shake.
But while Piper remembers every single thing about the mischievous, playful boy she once loved, the man he’s become acts like he barely remembers her at all.
A slight frown pulls his brows together. “Sarah, right?”
“What? Oh, right. Funny.” I laugh, waiting for his face to crack with a smile.
The moment drags on.
“Uh . . . Piper,” I stammer, my excitement deflating instantly. “From Camp Wawa?” You’ve got to be kidding me.I don’t look thatdifferent. And there’s no way I meant that littleto him that he’s forgotten about me.
As we move back and forth in the story with a thirteen-year gap in the timeline, the book’s alternating time structure gives the reader a chance to see Piper and Kyle’s romance blossoming in two very different stages of their lives. Much of their present connection rests on their memories of the strong chemistry they discovered that summer long since gone, but as Piper learns what forces prised them apart in the past, that knowledge becomes the first building block for a new, nascent romance that is full of promise, but also capable of leaving much deeper scars this time around.
“I can’t stand the thought of having you and then losing you again.”
While there’s a beautiful naïveté about the way a sixteen-year-old Piper experiences love for the first time and believes in the absolute power of that connection, the author takes her time building the relationship between the characters in the present. As they navigate a complex web of personal, familial, and professional challenges to figure out how to stay together, we also watch them consciously make room in their lives for the one they can’t live without, and to me, the real beauty of it all comes from the effort they make to figure out how they fit into each other’s worlds today. Tucker adds real-world undertones to a much beloved trope, turning this heartwarming second chance romance into a real treat.
“Was all this really worth it?”
“To get even one more day with you? It was worth EVERYTHING to me.”