Yet as much as I love them together, this story is really Willa's and I fell in love with her immediately. It's her fears I could so relate to and her doubts and questions that I understood. It didn't take long at all for me to feel extra protective of her! Even as I understood the reasons why her family and friends were worried for her (as was I!), I still spent every moment feeling her frustration as she struggled through her daily life all while dealing with people who always had the best of intentions but not the best of ways to fulfill said intentions (her brother in particular. I wanted to wring his neck a few times!). Maybe because I could see how hard she was struggling to get a grip on her life. She needed a major push, no doubt about it, but every time her hackles would rise, so would mine. And I was with her every single hard step out of her comfort zone and into a new courageous life.
A certain someone's help in learning to tame her fears certainly helped matters along quite nicely too. ;) Which is to say that I loved the quiet romance that slowly developed! While there's plenty of chemistry between the two, I particularly enjoyed how Patrick knew to give Willa her space. And that she needed a friend and a mentor of sorts on her road to fearlessness. His gentle pushing using an old mentor's travel journal was just the thing Willa needed.
Willa's journey moved me! I was swept into her life for a few hundred pages and loved every minute of watching her grow braver and stronger. She's a character that is still rattling around in my head days later and has become a part of my heart now. I highly recommend getting to know her! I really don't think you'll be disappointed. :)
**I received a complimentary copy from Waterfall Press via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
"Sometimes it takes seeing the world through someone else's eyes to realize where you fit inside it, you know?"
Still I chose not to speak. Words are often the last thing a hurting person needs.