Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: July 15th 2014
My rating: 4 stars
Annie hates running. No matter how far she jogs, she can’t escape the guilt that if she hadn’t broken up with Kyle, he might still be alive. So to honor his memory, she starts preparing for the marathon he intended to race. But the training is even more grueling than Annie could have imagined. Despite her coaching, she’s at war with her body, her mind—and her heart. With every mile that athletic Jeremiah cheers her on, she grows more conflicted. She wants to run into his arms…and sprint in the opposite direction. For Annie, opening up to love again may be even more of a challenge than crossing the finish line.
"If you don't put yourself out there, if you don't take risks, you can't truly feel"
Miranda Kenneally is an author whose books I know I can rely upon time and time again. This last month has been my worst reading month ever, I think I’ve only been able to finish one book and books which have been highly recommended to me too have been falling flat for me too. So with the release of Jesse’s Girl just around the corner, I was itching to get back to Kenneally’s Hundred Oaks series, I have enjoyed every single one of these books so far and really just wanted to read a book that I was in the mood for. And honestly I couldn’t have picked a better book.
Annie had decided to take upon the marathon for her boyfriend Kyle, Annie’s never been a runner, so to accomplish this in such a short amount of time would be amazing. Annie had experienced a lot of heartache the last few months, so I was completely rooting for Annie to be able to complete the marathon not only for Kyle but for herself too. I liked how Kenneally didn’t give us the whole back story to Kyle and Annie’s relationship, but bits of it over the course of the story. I was super curious to find out what actually happened and what made Annie want to do this in the first place. It was a real struggle at times reading about Annie and Kyle’s time together, because it was such a beautiful relationship, but Kenneally eased us into their story perfectly. I also appreciated the way Kenneally showed Annie’s growth over the course of the book, yes there was potentially a great relationship that Annie could have with Jeremiah, but I liked how Annie decided to take her time until she was ready for it, also that Jeremiah was willing to give Annie all the time she needed. I always love this quality in a guy.
Jeremiah was also another fantastic guy that Kenneally has introduced us to (I hope you keep them coming!) yes he would go out there to get his adrenaline rush, but deep down he was such a sweet guy. The last couple of months for Annie had been really tough, she didn’t really have anyone or anything she could turn to, so Jeremiah coming along was the ray of sunshine that she needed all along. He could be such a goof at times and make me laugh out loud and then he could bust out with the most romantic line ever that would have you forever swooning. I always thought I knew who my favourite crush would be from the Hundred Oaks series, but now with the introduction of Jeremiah I’m not so sure.
Once again I loved how Kenneally infused a sports themed storyline into this book, If you didn’t know already I’m the biggest ever sports geek. But also this book couldn’t have come at a better time for me, as I’d recently taken up running up in my spare time, so I could completely get into the running story line in this book. Also I do love it when authors keep you in the loop about how other favourite characters of yours from the series are getting on. I appreciate it more when it’s not just subtle mentions, but are around for most of the book too, so thanks once again Miranda for being the master at weaving previous characters into your work!
The Hundred Oaks series for me is one of the best series I have read in a long time, I’ve realised that each story I’ve become to love more and each character I end up falling for even more. I highly recommend everyone reading this series as it is one that no one should be missing out on!