Could Be the Reason: Gabe and Sadie (Back to Jetty Beach #3) by Claire Kingsley
“You don’t know what it’s like.”
“Being the one guy who didn’t get the girl.”
Maybe this makes me a dick, but life was easier when all the people around me weren’t enjoying their happily ever afters. I’m surrounded by couples—getting married, starting families. I’m the guy left behind.
And then Sadie walks into my life.
I’m not supposed to want her. But she awakens something inside me I thought was dead and gone. I was numb, and she makes me feel again.
She’s running from her past, but I won’t let it catch her. I’ll protect her from whatever she left behind. She gave me a reason to care; I want to give her a reason to trust. Maybe even a reason to love.
Caroline's Review ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“I’m drawn to her; she pulls at me like gravity.”
Sadie is a woman in hiding. The way she reacts to certain situations hints at something pretty disturbing in her past. However, she seems to land on her feet when fate and circumstance has her working at Gabriel’s restaurant. From the moment he sees Sadie, she affects him. He’s completely drawn to her beauty and, as he gets to know her, to her personality. After years of being a virtual workaholic, he finds himself preoccupied with thoughts of Sadie and what she’s running from, and, for the first time in a long time, he’s finding himself connecting with someone and feeling protective of her.
“I’m caught in a haze of conflicting emotions. Fear. Longing. Doubt. Tenderness. Hope.”
Gabriel longs for what his friends have – love, companionship, and a family. He’s also lost his creativity. He feels like he’s stagnating. Sadie seems to give him new purpose, new life, and reignites his passion for his work. I loved how much he cared for her and put her first. Sadie’s trepidation and fear wills him to be patient and go softly, especially when he realises that he wants everything with her. I loved that Sadie wanted to push against her fears to be with him; that she wanted to move forward with him, as he’s sparked a desire in her that’s always been missing. When Sadie’s past explodes back into their life, Gabe is willing to do whatever it takes to keep her safe because he knows that his life is nothing without her.
“In me, she found a reason to trust again. In her, I found a reason to care.”
This was a sweet, sexy, tentative story with a touch of brutality. I really liked the characters – Gabe is a solid guy – a real sweetheart. His care of Sadie made my heart melt. Sadie is tougher than she thinks. I loved how she was willing to walk away from the best thing in her life, towards a lonely future, to keep him safe. They really belonged with each other.