Title: Leo [Sign of Life #1]
Author: Mia Sheridan
Publication Date: March 11 2013
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Evie and Leo met in foster care as children and formed a bond of friendship. As they grew, their bond turned to love, and they vowed to make a life together when they turned 18 and were no longer a part of the system.
When Leo unexpectedly gets adopted as a teen and he moves to another city, he promises Evie that he will contact her as soon as he gets there and come back for her in a few short years. She never hears from him again.
Now eight years later, in spite of the odds, Evie has made a life for herself. She has a job. She has friends. She’s content. Then a man shows up out of the blue, claiming that her long lost love, Leo, sent him to check up on her. The attraction between them is undeniable. But, should she trust this sexy stranger? Or is he keeping a secret about what his connection to Leo is really all about and why Leo disappeared all those years ago?
THIS IS A STAND-ALONE SIGN OF LOVE NOVEL, INSPIRED BY LEO. New Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.
Honestly, I was kind of disappointed with this book. Hear me out.
I loved Mia Sheridan’s novel Archer’s Voice. It was a beautiful and heartbreaking story. And this one could have been.
Evie grew up in a foster home, with foster parents that weren’t all that attentive. As pointed out repeatedly throughout the book, she overcame all these difficulties and has managed to make a life for herself. That is, until she meets Jake, who sends her life spinning out of control, as old questions, worries, and heartbreak resurfaces.
I honestly felt very little connection to Evie, Leo, and Jake. They were surface characters to me, and that sucks, especially since I know that Sheridan is capable of wringing every tear and emotion from me with her words. I didn’t really get to feel Evie’s pain, it was mostly shown. She felt bad, this or that was hard for her to say, but she didn’t dig and she couldn’t make me feel for her.
Admittedly, the end of the book was a nice punch in a gut, something I feel like I should have felt for a fair amount of the book, but I was so disappointed that the emotional rebuilding was rushed and abruptly cut off by the end of the book. The length of the book was fine, but could have been filled with more emotion than I was given.
Next, Jake. Jake, Jake, Jake. If you’ve stuck around long enough, you know how I feel about super possessive relationships, and this was a tad much. It wasn’t one of those crazy psycho-esque novels, with the ‘loving’ boyfriend bashing in walls and killing people for their beloved, but it bothered me nonetheless. The book starts off with Jake stalking her, and then a few days into their half relationship he starts getting possessive (i.e. you’re mine, stay over at my place, you are everything to me). Like woah buddy, calm yourself, you guys have barely breathed the same air for ten minutes. Chill. I understand that it happens, people can just know that the other is ‘the one’, but that’s pushing at relationship a bit too much.
Lastly, the overall narrative. Everything was very robotic, very instructional almost.
Back in my kitchen, I put my own dinner on a tray and take it back into the only other small room. I sit on the floor and lean against my loveseat as I eat. A studio apartment doesn’t allow for a lot of furniture, but that’s okay because it’s not like I entertain. I put The Shawshank Redemption, one of my favorite movies, into the DVD player and push play. I don’t spend the extra money on cable so I reply on the DVDs I’ve picked up at garage sales. I’d usually rather read anyway, so it’s fine by me.
After I clean up my dishes, I end up falling asleep in front of the movie and when I finally drag myself into bed, it’s after midnight.
There’s too much telling, not enough showing, and it makes for a very rough and stilted narrative. Granted, I didn’t notice this right away, but after so long, it’s hard to get past.
Overall, I liked the idea of the novel, I liked the ending of the novel, but I would also love to cut out most of the beginning and middle of the novel just because it dragged on forever and didn’t really add much to the story. Not bad, but if you were to pick up a book by Sheridan, I’d go with Archer’s Voice.
World Building: 3/5
GoodReads Rating: 4.13/5