Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Seth was injured six months ago when a building collapsed on him as he was trying to rescue a young mother. Trapped there for hours, he watched all the victims in the room with him die, one by one, until he lost consciousness. Now, he’s struggling to come to terms with his injuries—injuries that not only left him scarred with pins in his thigh and groin area, but impotent, full of anger, and possibly with so much physical and emotional damage that he’ll never return to the career he’s wanted all his life.
Casey is done. He’s been loving and supportive, has tried gentle urging to get Seth to face his fears and see the department-recommended counselor, and has tried tough love. Nothing works, and as Seth lashes out at him and Casey reacts in fear, Casey knows he has to back away for a while so they can each get a better perspective.
Contrary to Casey’s hopes, however, instead of reassessing their situation and drawing them closer together, Seth reverts to his crutch—alcohol. And as the time approaches for Casey’s class trip, which Seth promised to attend, Casey realizes he’s taking the ten kids alone, making him feel like it’s the last straw.
This story was a study in the emotional havoc that can occur to someone who has undergone trauma, and the resulting collateral damage that can result to those who love them. I appreciate the author’s gentle and thorough handling of the subject. I also really liked both characters—even Seth, whose behavior was quite unlikeable. I also liked the fact that the author didn’t give them an easy fix. Both men had issues to work through and they were given the time and circumstances to do so. Granted, they had a boost from a snowstorm that stranded Casey and those ten kids and a rescue by a crazy firefighter who should not have risked his own life yet again, but did.
All in all, this is a very enjoyable story, quite short, but packs a lot of punch. If you like emotional turmoil, hurt-comfort, established couples, and stories with a happy ending, I highly recommend this one.
Cover by Meredith Russell features a firefighter in gear, set against the background of a cabin being bombarded by falling snow—perfect for the content of this book.
**This is the re-edited version of Seth and Casey, and includes 9,000 extra words and a new cover**
Published February 7th 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited (first published February 6th 2015)