Love Resurrected
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Pages: 71
Goes Well With: Hawaiian pizza and a bottle of merlot

Very few people are able to make it to middle age without at least one great heartbreak—whether it’s simply a teen crush who went to the prom with someone else or the break-up of a serious, long-term relationship. And in author Austyn Sherrie’s Love Resurrected, one woman is forced to resurrect her heartbreak—and possibly something else—more than a decade later.

The story follows Broadway actress Julia Sloan as she returns home to Orlando to star in a local production with a famous director. Though she has her reservations about returning to the place where the love of her life left her at the altar eleven years ago, she just can’t turn down the role. But then, on her first day of rehearsals, she discovers that she’ll be starring opposite Parker Davenport—the man who broke her heart. And though he’s determined to earn her forgiveness, she doesn’t know how she’ll be able to work with the man who’s caused her years of pain.

If you’ve ever unexpectedly come face to face with an ex, you’ll understand the flood of emotions that hits Julia once she sees Parker again: the anger, the hurt, the bitterness, and even the slightest hint of tenderness. After all, no matter how hurt she was by his betrayal, he was her first (and, really, only) love. Together, they have a shared past filled with happy memories. Even though she’s a professional, that frustrating mix of feelings gets in the way of her job. And Sherrie captures that blend of emotions well, making readers understand every maddening, heartbreaking, conflicted moment.

The storytelling, however, sometimes feels a bit clumsy. The format comes with plenty of challenges—and in order to keep the story short and sweet, it’s all condensed into a short period of time. As a result, everything feels abbreviated. The characters don’t have time to prepare for a full theatrical production while letting their feelings all play out naturally. And that means that some of the details feel a little too convenient—like the fact that Parker is fully aware that he’ll be working with Julia, while she has no idea that he’s been cast. And that may sometimes take away from the drama and romance.

In the end, Love Resurrected doesn’t tell a new or memorable story—and some of the storytelling choices are somewhat distracting—but Sherrie portrays the conflict and emotion of the situation well. So if you’re simply in the mood for a short, laid-back romantic read, it’s not a bad way to spend your lunch break.

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