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Jane's Melody by Ryan Winfield

--New York TimesUSA Today, and Wall Street JournalBestseller-- 

What boundaries would you cross for love?

That's the question a grieving mother must answer when she takes in a young street musician to learn about her daughter's death and finds herself falling for him. A touching love story that will have you equally tantalized and in tears, Jane's Melody follows a forty-year-old woman on a romantic journey of rediscovery after years of struggling alone.

Sometimes our greatest gifts come from our greatest pain. And now Jane must decide if it's too late for her to start over, or if true love really knows no age.

Jane's Melody may not be suitable for younger readers due to sexual content.

4.5 Stars

“Don’t you let fear have a place in your life, J. Not even a tiny place. Get rid of it from every hidden corner. Case it away with the truth, and do what you want to do while you can.” 

I’ve gotten a couple recommendations from reader friends to try this out. I was instantly intrigued by the older woman/younger man storyline, so I figured I’d give it a go. I must say I’m in utter awe. 

First off, don’t hate me, but I just have to say: I cannot believe a male author wrote this -- Is it horrible of me to say that? I’ve been constantly surprised when male authors attempt to write romance, but so far I haven’t been disappointed. This story was amazingly sweet, emotionally tender and so worth the time to read it. 

I didn’t cause it, I couldn’t control it. I didn’t cause it, I couldn’t control it. I didn’t cause it, I couldn’t control it. 

Jane has just lost her daughter Melody. No matter how hard she tried to help her, Melody was on downward spiral with no hope of controlling it. Jane is devastated. She wishes she could’ve done more, to have more of a connection to her, but alas, it’s all too late. 

As she sits in her car, staring at her daughter’s grave, she sees a man standing in front of it. Was he Melody’s boyfriend? She runs into him again in the city and is determined to find out how he’s connected to her daughter. What she finds is a man who calls to her soul. Caleb is sweet, honorable and is in need of some TLC. She takes him home, offers shelter, but he refuses to take her charity. Instead she offers Caleb work, as a gardener of sorts, as a form of payment until he can get on his feet. However the connection she feels towards him knocks her off axis. They’re attracted to each other, but she is reluctant to give in until she finds out how he’s connected to Melody.

“We’re you attracted to her?”
“I’m attracted to you.”
“Everything I liked about her, I love in you.” 

This was such an emotionally charged book. The beginning kinda reminded me of a glum and gloomy rainy day in Seattle (which is perfect considering that’s where this is set…well, at least around that area). Anyway, as the story unfolds, you start to see a break in the clouds; rays of hope and sunshine start to emerge. Jane seems to be stuck in a rut after her Melody’s death, but with Caleb, she starts to slowly heal. 

As for Caleb…**Sigh**. He’s one of the sweetest Heroes I’ve come across in a long time. There’s no hidden agenda, just completely honorable. He’s so unbelievably sweet and I fell completely and hopelessly in love with him. 

The only reason I couldn’t give this book a full five stars was that I wished there was more dialogue and more interaction between Caleb and Jane. There was a lot of narrative, some of which I felt was a little repetitive. I cherished all the times Caleb and Jane interacted with each other. Their connection and the way they help each other heal and move forward is what made the story so wonderful. Oh! Wait. There is another reason why I couldn’t give it a full five stars: I wanted an epilogue!!! It just ended too abruptly for me, I wanted just a little more. Here’s hoping Mr. Winfield will write a little something extra for us readers. (Hint, hint, wink, wink).

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