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Our Review

“I can’t take anymore heartbreak.”
“Then it’s a good thing I’m not going to break your heart.”

The 5 Stages of Falling in Love was as heart-warming as it was heart wrenching. The prologue was one of the saddest and most beautifully moving passages we’ve read and we truly felt every word, every moment and we felt it hard. What a way for this author to bring us into her story.

‘Grief doesn’t get easier with each stage. Grief becomes harder, more difficult to face, more consuming with each breath I take. I am adrift in a sea of confusion.  I am lost in a desert of heartache.’

Liz is a young woman in her early 30’s with four children, left widowed and adrift after losing the one and only love of her life. Liz is forced to deal with the grief of losing her husband, her soulmate, all whilst remaining buoyant enough to be support and confidante to her children. Despite drowning in her own grief, Liz had to be strong and attempt to ease the grief and confusion enveloping her children.

How do you move on after experiencing a soul searing love and a completely heartbreaking loss?

‘Sometimes love didn’t make sense. And that was okay.’

A bright light in Liz’s otherwise dull existence is her new neighbour Ben Tyler. An upbeat, eternal bachelor who takes a shine to Liz, enjoying her company and he in turn offers Liz an outlet to share her thoughts and escape her misery. We have to say, the introduction between Liz and Ben was hilarious! This was such a sweet and funny scene and on that note we have to say, this author wrote these children beautifully. They felt real, vulnerable and they completely touched our hearts.

“Is that why Ben is here…..did Daddy send Ben to take care of us?”

As Liz goes through her stages of grief you desperately will her to come out the other end and open her heart to Ben, but the road isn’t an easy one. Along with grief, there is the feeling of guilt for wanting to move on, for experiencing feelings Liz thinks she shouldn’t feel.

‘Our feelings for each other didn’t start as a seed, they started as an ocean.’

The 5 Stages of falling In Love is tragic yet so beautifully hopeful. There were times our sympathies tended to lie with Ben as, in this character, the author wrote such an endearingly wonderful man, that when he hurt, we hurt and these moments sometimes had us disconnecting from Liz. Her actions often felt unfair, though we did understand the conflicting feelings she was experiencing.

‘Ben wasn’t the answer to all of my problems. He might have eased the burden, be he didn’t take them away.’

There were a few times, particularly towards the end, where we felt as though we were being told, rather than shown the story, we would have also loved more ‘afters’ as we felt it ended a little abruptly.

But that said, if you’re looking for a beautiful, emotional and story of grief, love, hope and love, then this standalone read is a certainly recommended to satisfy feelings.

Synopsis

The Five Stages of Falling in Love is a Contemporary Romance.
Elizabeth Carlson is living in the pits of hell- also known as grief.

Her husband of eight years, the father of her four children and the love of her life, died from cancer. Grady’s prognosis was grim, even from the start, but Liz never gave up hope he would survive. How could she, when he was everything to her?

Six months later, she is trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life and get the kids to school on time. Both seem impossible. Everything seems impossible these days.

When Ben Tyler moves in next door, she is drowning in sorrow and pain, her children are acting out, and the house is falling apart. She has no time for curious new friends or unwanted help, but Ben gives her both. And he doesn’t just want to help her with yard work or cleaning the gutters. Ben wants more from Liz. More than she’s capable of ever giving again.

As Liz mourns her dead husband and works her way through the five stages of grief, she finds there’s more of her heart to give than she thought possible. And as new love takes hold, she peels away the guilt and heartache, and discovers there’s more to life than death.

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