Chasing The Tide
by A. Meredith Walters Series: Reclaiming The Sand #2 Published
by Self-Published Genres: College, New Adult AMZ US AMZ UK B&N Kobo
***The powerful continuation of the story that began in Reclaiming the Sand- a tale of love and forgiveness and learning to move on from a past that has come to define you.*** Bully and Victim Friend and Lover Past and Future Ellie McCallum and Flynn Hendrick’s story was as painful as it was devastating. But they were able to find within each other an unlikely yet beautiful love. Despite the obstacles that tried to keep them apart. And together they rose out of the ashes of their tragic history. Now years after their life changing reunion Ellie is back in Wellston, having just graduated from college and ready to start her future with the man who taught her how to love. However, returning to a town that held so much bitterness and anger was the last place she wanted to start over. But for Flynn, who is now an art professor at the community college and firmly rooted in the place that gave them their beginning, she’d do just about anything. Yet it’s difficult building a life when you’ve only just learned how to live. And love, no matter how strong, doesn’t always conquer all. Ellie and Flynn must learn how far they are willing to go to stay together. Or whether the ghosts of the past will consume them both. Because finding a happily ever after is harder than it seems. Particularly when you’re fighting against the one thing that could destroy you. Yourself.
4.5 CHANGING Stars
“My entire existence had been composed of one bad choice after another. Until Flynn. He was my redemption. My Salvation.”
In the much-anticipated sequel to Reclaiming the Sand, Ms. Walter’s provides us with an in-depth look into the life and psyche of Ellie. I felt as if I was back in college again reading a case study. It seems the knowledge the author gained in her previous field of employment as a counselor for at-risk teens and children, helped in the writing of this book. Seeing Ellie struggle with becoming a different, better person was not easy to read, because in order to see the change, we had to see what made her like she is. I think what one can take away from this book is that it doesn’t matter as much what happened to you in your past, or who you were, or the things you did, what matters most is what you chose to do about it. How you chose to respond, and live. You can stay stuck in the pain or push through and see your way to a brighter future.
“These streets were paved with my pain and regret. But it was here, among the ugly reality that I had inexplicably found my heart. My soul.”
This held true also with Flynn. The author showcased Flynn’s personality in such a way that he became a hero. He truly struggled daily to be more conscious of his behavior towards others. He didn’t let his diagnosis define who he was. He wanted to be a better Flynn, not a different Flynn.
“I got them from the flower shop in town.” – Flynn “Oh yeah? Why is that?” – Ellie “I get some every week when it’s cold out and they don’t grow in the garden anymore.” – Flynn “Every week? Really? I didn’t think you were the flower kind of guy.” – Ellie “I liked to keep them around because they reminded me of you.”
Again the author uses a dual POV and leads us through the present and past, to help the reader along the journey. The end of the book was beautiful. It brought tears to my eyes. It was the perfect ending to their story!
“Every story has a beginning. Flynn was mine. He was my beginning. My end. My home.”
As anyone who knows me can attest, I love listening to music as I read. I often refer to a song in my reviews. For me, “Have a Little Faith in Me.” as sung by Luke Wade was the perfect song for this book. Luke Wade | Have a Little Faith in Me – The Voice
***Bully and victim. Tormenter and tormented. Villain and hero. Ellie McCallum was a bully. No connection to anyone or anything. A sad and lonely existence for a young woman who had come to expect nothing more for herself. Her only happiness coming from making others miserable. Particularly Freaky Flynn. Flynn Hendrick lived a life completely disconnected even as he struggled to become something more than that boy with Asperger’s. He was taunted and teased, bearing the brunt of systematic and calculated cruelty, ultimately culminating in a catastrophic turn of events that brought Ellie and Flynn’s worlds crashing down. But then Flynn and Ellie grew up. And moved on. Until years later when their paths unexpectedly cross again and the bully and the freak are face to face once more. When labels come to define you, finding yourself feels impossible. Particularly for two people disconnected from the world who inexplicably find a connection in each other. And out of the wreckage of their tragic beginnings, an unlikely love story unfolds. But a painful past doesn’t always want to let go. And old wounds are never truly healed…and sometimes the further you try to run from yourself the closer you come to who you really are.