One of my favorite authors writing a follow-up on one of my favorite couples? Yes, please. Shadowed Heart is the what happened after the HEA story of Luc and Summer. Luc and Summer are the H/h in The Chocolate Heart. They are both complex, deep souls and end up being perfect for each other. Summer wants to be needed and loved and Luc wants to give everything he has. When we last saw them they were well on their way to a long, happy life.
Now we find them in the South of France with Luc struggling with a new restaurant. He has taken Summer from her island, her solace, and needs to prove himself by earning a star for this new venture. He is struggling mightily because he doesn’t have Patrick or most of his trusted people. He works day and night to prove himself only to be floored when Summer tells him she is pregnant.
He wants children so badly but the only thing he can think of is how his mother abandoned him and he is left wondering if Summer will do the same. He knows she isn’t like that but some awful part of his brain isn’t convinced the same won’t happen.
Summer only wants Luc and his love but when she starts to get horrible morning sickness and is so incredibly lonely she is a little lost. Taking advice from her horrid mother is out of the picture because all she talks about is miscarriage and nannies. The one person she wants is the one person who is busy somewhere else. To make matters worse, she can’t even visit him at the restaurant because she can’t take the smells.
A couple of miscommunications and time not spent together and Luc and Summer are confused and lost. Maybe some help from family and friends is just the thing they need.
Laura Florand is an author who manages to bring all the emotions, conflict and heartache her characters are experiencing and make the reader feel the same. I hurt for Luc and his dented soul. He was so afraid Summer would leave him and/or their child that he lashed out in a way that accomplished the opposite of what he wanted. He thought that by keeping her from going to her island he could keep her from leaving him. It was heartbreaking to read the damage done to him by his mother and how it translated to every relationship he has ever had, or not had.
Her eyes shimmered. “Luc.” She touched his face. “You are the beauty. You have no idea, do you, how beautiful you are. Not the things you make. You.” Her hand cupped his cheek. “So you see….you did, indeed, make a thing of beauty that no one could ever steal from you.”
God, she hurt his heart. It was as if that heart couldn’t get used to thumping so hard from joy and kept bruising itself on its own happiness. Who knew that even happiness required you to be tough enough to brave it. He lifted her hand, clutched around his bracelet, and kissed it. “You’ve got all the desserts you want now.”
“Oh, Luc.” She petted his chest. “All this heart in you. Sometimes I just can’t believe it’s all for me.”
He covered her hand, holding it tight to the beat of his heart. “It is, though.”
Poor Summer was left all alone, pregnant, sick and struggling to understand why Luc thought it was so important to win a star for their child. All she wanted was for him to be there and all he wanted was to prove how he could be good and whole for both of them. They were clearly at cross purposes and it drove a wedge between them.
The wedge was fixed by the wonderful addition of all the previous couples in the Amour et Chocolat series. When Luc realizes how badly he screwed up and calls in Patrick, Dom and Sylvain to help fix it, that is when the story turned awesome. I loved seeing them all together. Tortured Luc has been one of my favorites (with Dom being the first) but Patrick swooped in and stole the show here. Patrick’s role in this book made me want to go back and reread his story. I was thrilled with the results of Patrick visits. I don’t want to spoil anything but I was grinning like a fool and maybe even wiping a tear or two.
I think this was supposed to be a followup novella to Summer and Luc’s HEA but it ended up being so much more. I am hopeful we saw the next character we would have the pleasure of reading about. Sylvain and Cade had some truly funny moments. Jaime and Dom are lovely as usually and we even got to visit with Gabriel and Jolie, a couple we don’t usually hear much about. Did I mention I loved Patrick in this one? Cause I did. Him and Sarah were amazing.
Overall this was a lovely book. I was charmed by the gathering of all previous couples, I fell in love even more with Summer and Luc and I finished the book a bit excited about who would be coming next. I adore Ms. Florand’s writing and her way with imagery so much that I think I will go back and read some of these books again. Fans of this series will love this one. Final grade- B+
So this one has the Consumer Report rating, but some reviewers on Amazon said its motor quit after two weeks.
Phone: I’m not sure I understand.
And the other one looks really cute, and it has that side to side swing motion that some reviewers said was good, but it’s all pastels, and I thought I read babies could only really see black and red.
Phone: I found fifteen place matching swing dance clubs. Thirteen fairly close to you.
Look, money is no freaking object, can I just have a swing that is perfect for my baby?
Phone: Here’s what I found on the web: “How to Perform the Perfect Golf Swing”.
You are a terrible substitute for human companionship.