Nom de Plume Rating: ★★★★★
Reading Time: 4 minutes
I fell in love with Thomas Wells and knew he was my forever.
I was sixteen when I gave him my heart.
Our love was the kind to last a lifetime.
But Thomas was broken.
The first day we met he told me he was going to become a Navy SEAL.
At nineteen he enlisted.
At twenty he married me.
At twenty-five he left me pregnant and didn’t turn back.
I knew he was suffering….
I also knew I couldn’t save him.
He left me broken.
I was scared and alone.
Until I met Ryder St. John a wounded soldier…
He was lost.
I was lost.
Together we made sense.
I fell in love again…
What Ryder forgot to mention was that he held a secret so explosive that it could shatter both our worlds.
***This is a full-length novel and is intended for a mature audience.***
First Lines: I lie in bed waiting for Halo to wake up. I know Christmas was a big deal around her house when she was growing up. Even though her parents are gone I still want her to feel the magic of the holiday. When I was a kid Christmas was another shitty day in my life. Nothing to celebrate. Another mark on the calendar moving me closer to the time I could leave my father and my dirty past behind.
There are a handful of military-themed books I cherish, and Halo is absolutely one of them.
Some books have an unparalleled way of inspiring you. Reading Halo was like looking through a kaleidoscope; my perspective on life continuously shifting. When the movement stopped, I was instantaneously imprinted with a new outlook on life.
To understand the impact this book had on me, you need to know three things:
- My daddy was in the Navy and served in Vietnam.
- Some of my closest friends are those I have met through sending letters and care packages to US troops.
- At one point in time, I was faced with the decision of joining the Navy or pursuing a career in engineering, and I chose engineering. Every day I wonder what my life would be like if I chose differently.
RC Stephens, thank you for this gift. Your words will be on repeat in my mind for weeks.
On to the juicy juice!?
Thomas has a rough family history. In contrast, Halo is an only child and the light of her parents’ eyes. The two come from very different upbringings, but they share one thing: the desire to get through life together.
The day Halo and Thomas meet, he is very upfront about his dream of becoming a Navy SEAL. If you’re seeking unconditional love, friends, RC Stephens is giving it to you! (Yeehaw) Halo is absolutely understanding and supports Thomas through his training.
Lets talk about Thomas here. Thomas is the perfect man (and husband to Halo). I mean, let’s be honest. He wants to provide for Halo, protect her, and he strives to make a difference. Yespleasethankyou. In return, Halo constructs a life around him that they can share together. He is her rock, and she is his light.
Then the war in Afghanistan changes him.
Then Halo becomes pregnant, except Thomas does not want children in fear he’ll end up like his good-for-nothing parents.
I always missed him when he was gone and waited for his return. This time was different. I waited for him to make contact. It never came. Then the divorce papers were delivered and I understood…
Unfortunately for Halo, none of her plans seem to work out. Her husband is suffering from PTSD, he abandons her at the start of her pregnancy, and she is alone for the first time in her life.
In comes Ryder St. John. Did I say Thomas was the perfect man? Can I take that back? RYDER IS THE PERFECT MAN. I have placed Ryder on a pedestal so high that I fear no man (real or fictional) will ever compare.
We first meet Ryder at the hospital when Halo is giving birth. Ryder is a US Navy Soldier damaged from major injuries; he is disfigured from an ambush in Afghanistan and went through four months of reconstructive surgery. He is also suffering from amnesia and has no idea who he is.
Ryder is alone in the world, like Halo, so she offers to rent him a space in her home. He willingly accepts since he doesn’t want to be around other veterans… he can’t remember any war stories to share anyways.
Ryder is a MAN. He helps take care of Halo’s newborn son, he fixes up Thomas’ old truck, he refinishes the floor in her home… Where has this man been hiding? (Do men like this really exist? #NoWay)
Life is short and I want to at least enjoy some of it. Even if it means taking something that isn’t mine… I want to make Halo Pearson fall in love with me.
Halo is now faced with the challenge of letting Thomas go. Part of her hopes he will return, but will she take him back now that she has Ryder? (Let him go, girl! You have the greatest man right in front of your eyes!) Her and Ryder do not share a past, but they can certainly build a future together. Ryder is faced with equally challenging questions as he does not feel entirely whole without his memory. He has an ex-wife he wants closure with, and he feels like a fool for not remembering the ambush that killed his friends.
Each holding their own insecurities, Halo and Ryder muddle through the mud together. They let go of their demons and relearn how to love.
What do they say about a person’s eyes? Something about them being a portal to a person’s soul and it all makes sense. There were never any walls, never any boundaries with Ryder St. John.
Friends, this book is incredible. It’s a story about renewed love and not letting the past define your future. I was projecting a Level 5 hurricane off of my FACE the entire time.
This book possesses everything a ★★★★★ read should have: poetic, sexy, and absolutely heartwarming.
? AMAZON ?