There's a first time for everything.

Lark Wainright used to be fearless. Her life was a series of adventures, each one more exhilarating than the last. But her recent overseas adventure was one too many. Now she’s home and in one piece. Mostly. But her nights are filled with terror.
When her best friend offers her a stay at the orchard in exchange for help at the farmers’ markets, Lark jumps at the chance to spend fall in Vermont. But her nightmares don’t stop. Desperate to keep her fragile state a secret, she relies on the most soft-spoken resident of the Shipley Farm to soothe her when her dreams prove too much.

Zachariah is a survivor, too. It’s been four years since he was tossed aside by the polygamist cult where he grew up. He’s found a peaceful existence on the Shipley’s farm, picking apples and fixing machinery. But getting thrown away by your own people at nineteen leaves a mark on a guy. He doesn’t always know what to make of a world where movie quotes are the primary means of communication. Before hitchhiking to Vermont, he’d never watched TV or spoken on the phone.

Actually, there are a lot of things he’s never done.

Zach and Lark slowly grow to trust one another. One night they become even closer than they’d planned. But Lark may still be too broken to trust anyone. When she pushes Zach away, he will have to prove to himself that he's good for much more than farm labor.

*Note:  This book was provided to The Book Hookup by the Publisher but that did not in any way influence this review!

This story played with my heart…shattering it, teasing it, and, ultimately, fusing it back together.  I’ve been waiting for this book since the very first time I met Zachariah in Bittersweet, the first installment of this series.  I found him intriguing from the very start and did a dance of joy when I found out he would be getting his own book.  His story did not disappoint!

In this book I learned more about Zach’s tragic background and realized how much strength was hidden within this quiet, reserved, hard-working man.  The hardships he’s endured could have made him a bitter man.  Instead, Zach is caring, big-hearted, and a tender soul…a real gentleman!  His love for the Shipley family and his his gentleness and patience with Lark just embedded him more deeply into my heart.  Lark is strong – stronger than she realizes.  She used to be a wild child, a fearless girl.  But, having lived through a horrific incident, she’s left with nightmares and scares she didn’t have before.  Meeting Zach is something she didn’t expect but, with his help, she begins to see the world differently.  Their romance is a slow burn…and oh so delicious!!  These two take each other beyond what each believes is possible and they take the reader on a heart-warming ride.

Book Rating Breakdown
General Book Feels
Degree my heart was ripped out

I highly recommend this series.   The books get better and better as the series progresses and I, for one, am sorry that this is the last installment.  I loved Griffin, Jude, Zach…and the girls who turned their heads.  These stories tore at my heart and made me smile.  They taught me about harvesting apples and making cider…and they made me want to plan a trip to Vermont very soon.  As always, Ms. Bowen has written a story that pulled me in and given me characters that I couldn’t help but love.  I can’t wait to see what she has up her sleeve next!!

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