“My name is Vera Miles.
And in the story of my life, I am the villain.”
The Prologue knocked me on my butt! I instantly imagined it the beginning of a movie, and knew I was in for something special.
“Love, that ultimate villainess. She makes examples of us all. And yet we still come back for more,”
I profess to being a dialogue driven reader, however I didn’t realize while reading, I had gone pages without dialogue. That’s how amazingly talented KH is. I didn’t miss it, didn’t look for it, didn’t care it wasn’t there.
This is about Vera Miles, 23-year-old astronomy student, tattooed, pierced, wild child, and dreamer. Who travelled by herself to London and then to Spain, where she would be teaching conversational English to Spanish-speaking men and women. Obviously it turned rich in dialogue. This book was written for me!
KH proved with this book, she is not a one-dimensional writer. She is like a rainbow, so full of color she radiates. From horror, to drug/crime to pure romance, KH is an example of true talent.
The sign of a good book for me is that you can’t stop thinking about it. And on Mother’s Day, I just wanted to leave the family festivities, and get back to reading this book. I wanted to know what was going to happen next. It was eating away at me. I was fantasizing about it. My brain was filling in the missing pieces as I lay by the pool lounging in the sun. I was living it in my head.
Mateo Casalles is a 38-year-old, successful businessman from Madrid, who wears thousand dollar suits and a sexy smile. He’s full of Latino charm, and in an unhappy marriage. He has a 5-year-old daughter who is his world.
The two meet during the ride to Las Palabras and hit it off instantly. They find each other attractive. He sees her as the carefree spirit he once was and she sees him as a “gorgeous, sensual, Spanish god“.
Mateo tells her, “Sometimes you are stuck being the person you are and not the person you were. Or could be.”
As their days pass in Casa De Las Palabras, they become closer, their flirtations stronger, more obvious between each other. But it isn’t until the very last days there that either of them admit to themselves, and each other how they feel.
“Love is like a thief, it robs you of all thought and logic, and all you have left is a heart that you can only pray is strong enough to survive the rest”
I loved the flirtatious banter between them, and Mateo’s charm.
“You are good?”
“I can carry my own bag,” I explained patiently, “but thank you for offering.”
“Ah,” “I thought you were saying you were good, like a good girl.”
“Oh, I am definitely not a good girl.”
“I knew there was a reason I liked you.” He wagged his finger at me, eyes glittering.
Vera changed as a result of her time at Las Palabras. Not just that she fell in love – which in and of itself is huge. But, because the once self-described loner, began to depend on people.
“This was very unlike me-one day at Las Palabras and I was changing. I wasn’t sure if I liked it.”
They faced struggles of the moral kind. And rightly so. No matter how you look at it, he is still married and 15 years older than she is.
But she is his Estrella, his star that always burns bright. And he can’t imagine life without her, because she accepts and encourages him to be who he is.
“I love you, Vera. I’ve had the moon, the dark, the cold, for too long. I want my star back. My Estrella.”
Beautifully written main characters and side characters, fulfilling, solid plot that will keep you spell-bound the entire read, Karina Halle has proven to be a master story-teller.