I know that some readers might be squeamish about the fact that The Ones Who Got Away series focuses on the survivors of a high school shooting years after the tragedy, but readers who choose to skip reading these books are missing out. I can’t say too much without giving away plot points, but the author handles the details of the stories so beautifully and so delicately that the triggers in the books are really minimal.
Shaw, despite the fact that he made me cry (damn it) has officially made my list of all-time favorite book boyfriends. After what happened to him, he so easily could’ve fallen into alphahole land, where alpha males often go after tragedy, but he didn’t. (For those of you who don’t know, alphahole land is where book boyfriends who’ve fallen on hard times go to drink until they black out and manwhore about with anything in a skirt under the guise of “easing their pain” and “forgetting their painful pasts.”) Shaw is understandably reserved and keeps to himself, but he doesn’t ever wallow in self pity or act like an ass. He’s just a good-hearted, nice guy, and you don’t find enough of those in romance novels these days.
So, I think I made my feelings on Shaw clear, but Taryn is also an awesome heroine. She’s smart and compassionate and driven to make the world a better, safer place. She’s suffered unthinkable tragedy, but she’s a survivor, through and through. She’s nothing short of inspiring.
And can I also say that it’s nice to read about an interracial couple where race isn’t even an issue that’s ever mentioned? These two don’t run into any problems because he’s white and she’s black. I REALLY wish the real world always worked like that.
I could go on and on about what I love about this author and these books, but what’s the point? You’ve heard all you need to hear. Go read these books! You can thank me later.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
It’s stigma-free. No rehab needed.
Other reading suggestions
You’ll want to read everything Roni Loren has ever written. Don’t stop until you run out of books. Then, you’ll want to check these out: