December 26, 2014

Title: Home is Where You Are
Author: Tessa Marie
Published: September 30, 2014
Publisher: self-published
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Synopsis: Anna’s life reads like a check list. Straight A’s (Check) Editor of the school paper (Check) Volunteering time at the local soup kitchen (Check) Ivy League (So close she can taste it)

Falling in love with a homeless boy (Not on the list)

Dean has a plan too. Survive. After being subjected to his foster father’s violent attacks, Dean made the hard choice to leave. Now he lives on the streets doing everything he can to get by, refusing to let people help him. But when he meets Anna, he realizes not everyone is out to hurt him.

Slowly, Anna and Dean let each other in, blending their two worlds into one. But when a series of events brings Dean’s world into perspective, he pushes Anna away. Not willing to accept the line that divides them, Anna sets out to bring Dean back to her. Her determination and faith in their future puts her on the tracks of danger, and he is the only one who can save her.

**I received a copy of this book,
but that did not influence the review**

3stars Home is Where You Are caught my eye right away with the synopsis. I love dark and gritty, and let’s face it…being homeless is pretty gritty. This storyline, on paper, had 2 seemingly opposite main characters, Dean and Anna, but in reality they ended up being a great combination together. The ending wrapped up a little too easily, too tidy considering all that had happened before, but it still left me with a happy feeling.

The romance was there, and I always love a slow buildup. It was so tentative, with so much potential. Dean and Anna were a great pair, and once we got to know them we found out how alike there were, and that is why they clicked. They also had a physical chemistry that was great and I wish I had more descriptions of the little physical things, like touches, hand holding, standing close, kisses. I was craving that.

Some of the secondary characters were great, like Barney and Marv…but the girl bff Katie was horrid. Anna had no self respect by being friends with her and that friendship really bothered me quite a bit.

I totally enjoyed myself as I was reading this story, and just as I was gearing up for pushing through all the conflicts, almost all were solved within minutes. It was as if someone snapped a finger and SLIGHT SPOILER HERE: Dean got a home, job, found his sister, Anna and her mom reconciled, Anna got through to her brother, etc. Everything worked out so easily, when in reality this dark and gritty story should have had a more grueling road.

Rec it? Sure! It was a sweet story with a great foundation. With a little more toggling this could be elevated into a truly great read with the HEA we all love. I’d definitely read more by this author and would love to see how she develops other stories.

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