Tuesday, 21 February 2017

A Thousand Letters by Staci Hart


Sometimes your life is split by a single decision.

I’ve spent every day of the last seven years regretting mine: he left, and I didn’t follow. A thousand letters went unanswered, my words like petals in the wind, spinning away into nothing, taking me with them.

But now he’s back.

I barely recognize the man he’s become, but I can still see a glimmer of the boy who asked me to be his forever, the boy I walked away from when I was young and afraid.

Maybe if he’d come home under better circumstances, he could speak to me without anger in his voice. Maybe if I’d said yes all those years ago, he’d look at me without the weight of rejection in his eyes. Maybe if things were different, we would have had a chance.

One regretted decision sent him away. One painful journey brought him back to me. I only wish I could keep him.

*A contemporary romance inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion*

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Kristine's Review:
Reviewed: February 2017.

When Hart announced A Thousand Letters was inspired by Jane Austen's Persuasion I was intrigued, modern retellings are part and parcel of my generation, who can forget Alicia Silverstone's modern take on Emma... it seems we revisited and revised many of the iconic literary greats over the years, and while some have been thoroughly enjoyable, others have missed the mark for me.

"I could heal him, but he would ruin me."

Hart's writing continues to go from strength to strength for me, resulting in A Thousand Letters being an emotionally charged, beautifully eloquent homage to one of the greats of romance. Wade and Elliot were once best friends and lovers, with dreams of conquering the world and trading their lives of obscurity for something far greater, but when demands were made, their plans for the future crumbled. Years apart, swamped with guilt and anger over their individual losses have altered the people they once were, when Wade has to return home under the most dire of circumstances, they are forced to address all that transpired all those years ago, when confronted with the pain of their past Wade and Elliot must decide if a second chance is what they need or if it's time to move on finally after all those years apart.

"Life is short, so short, so precious, every minute, every day. Don't let the people you love, the people who make you happy, the people who bring you joy —don't let them go. Hang on to them, even when it hurts. When it seems impossible. Hold on to the things that breathe life into you. Listen to your soul and honor what it tells you. Live. Fight for what you love."

There's a beauty in Hart's words, an eloquence that breathes life into everything she writes, there's that same beauty in her flawed and damaged characters, a resilience that must be admired, a quiet strength and tenacity that shines through, in A Thousand Letters the Author begs you to trust her to take a well loved favourite and give it a uniquely Staci feel, while I love her quirky humour, I absolutely adore her ability to create angst that never feels too much or overdone, it's in those quiet moments of exquisite prose that you find these rare gems of thoughtful and yet raw dialogue that leaves your heart thundering against your chest. If it's the author's job to make you feel, then Hart deserves a gold medal, it's impossible to not be moved by her words. Where other's have tried and failed, this inspired by story has absolutely hit the mark, leaving this sometime cynic clutching her chest, with the message of this beautiful story resonating so deeply within.

About Staci Hart:

Staci has been a lot of things up to this point in her life -- a graphic designer, an entrepreneur, a seamstress, a clothing and handbag designer, a waitress. Can't forget that. She's also been a mom, with three little girls who are sure to grow up to break a number of hearts. She's been a wife, though she's certainly not the cleanest, or the best cook. She's also super, duper fun at a party, especially if she's been drinking whiskey.

From roots in Houston to a seven year stint in Southern California, Staci and her family ended up settling somewhere in between and equally north, in Denver. They are new enough that snow is still magical. When she's not writing, she's reading, sleeping, gaming, or designing graphics.

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