All of You (Sarah Monzon) – Review

5 stars

~ About the Book ~

Maryland, Present Day

Jacquelyn Rogers can rebuild anything…except the shambles of her past. A restorer of vintage planes, she’s worked hard to earn the reputation of being one of the guys. The last thing she needs is a former Navy pilot fighting his own inner demons stepping in to defend her from dangers she thought she’d outrun long ago. Some battles must be fought alone.

After a freak accident severs Lieutenant Michael “Finch” Carrington’s dreams, as well as two limbs, he’s left with nothing but a fragile faith and a duty-bound promise to watch out for his friend’s baby sister. A promise she insists is as unnecessary as it is unappreciated. But when she turns the tables and begins to weld together the broken parts of his life, it may be his heart that is in need of protection.

England, 1942

With the world at war yet again, Alice Galloway rejects her father’s traditional expectations and offers her piloting expertise to the Air Transport Auxiliary. She may be a woman in a man’s world, but when she overhears key intelligence, she must find the strength to transcend boundaries and her own fears. Or countless people may die.

Sometimes the past reaches forward to bring hope to the future.

~ Excerpt ~

Note: ‘Jack’ is the main character, Jacquelyn Rogers.

“I wouldn’t do that if I were you.”
Jack’s gaze swung from Mitch’s thunderous scowl to the stranger’s hardened features. His square jaw ticked, the corners of his ocean-blue eyes tight. It was illogical, the way her body instantly responded to this stranger’s presence. Physical, yes. But more than that. His obvious desire to protect her made her feel safe. The uncontrollable shaking that had taken over eased as fear ebbed away in a warm feeling of safety. Which was crazy. Not only was she literally in the middle of two men who might, at any minute, start brawling, but except for that one time three years ago, she’d taken care of herself, defended herself. Growing up with two older brothers kind of prepared a girl that way.
Mitch gave the guy a once-over and sneered. “Yeah? You gonna make me?”
For the first time, Jack noticed the crutch tucked under the man’s arm . . . his only arm. A white sock of some sort covered the remainder of the other one. And one pant leg was creased above the knee and pinned up.  US Navy printed in white letters across the front of his shirt reflected from the bar’s fluorescent light. A real-life Captain America and her present hero. If a bit banged up.
Those blue eyes smoldered. “If I have to.”
Mitch smirked and yanked on Jack’s arm. “We’ll finish this discussion in private.”
“No.” She clawed at his hand, but his grip only tightened.
“You heard her—now let her go.” Her rescuer put his sock-covered arm on Mitch’s shoulder.
“Get that thing off me.” Mitch shoved at the man’s bicep, then pushed Jack toward the door.
Captain America stepped in front of Mitch, and Jack sucked in a breath. Like watching the pressure build in water rocket, Mitch exploded, fist balled and throwing a wide hook at the man’s head. Captain America ducked and in one fluid motion jerked his crutch up into his hand and shoved the curved padded part into Mitch’s throat until he was pinned to the wall.
“You will apologize to the lady and then get your sorry carcass out of here.” The low timbre of the stranger’s voice held a rod of steel.
Mitch hesitated and threw her a murderous look—which earned him added pressure against his windpipe. Veins popped out along his neck, his muscles straining to receive oxygen.
Jack inched away. She didn’t need an apology; she needed to collect her dad and get the heck out of there.
“Sorry.”
Mitch’s croak made her pause.
Captain America gave the crutch a shove along the side of Mitch’s head in the direction of the exit. He stumbled but quickly righted himself, pausing at the door long enough to throw her a threatening look.

~ Review ~

Ahhhh! *happy sigh* Sarah Monzon has outdone herself with this novel! What a beautiful story, especially Michael’s journey—becoming a double amputee and struggling to deal with the challenges that presents. And that ending! So poignant, and absolutely perfect for the story.

She's sock BrettMichael and Jack (I don’t suggest calling her Jacquelyn!) were such strong characters—not because they didn’t have struggles, but because of the way they faced their struggles. It’s obvious the author did her research regarding amputees—both the emotional and the physical challenges they encounter—and I loved the way details of Michael’s physical recovery and adjustment were woven organically into the story. Michael’s spiritual struggle was also superbly done. Sure, he struggles with the question ‘why?’, but not from a position of doubting God’s goodness. Rather, he’s desperate for God to show him where to go from here.

Michael's strengthI warmed to Michael from the very first scene, but when he swallowed his self-doubt and agreed to look out for his best mate’s sister to the best of his ability (this, while lying in his hospital bed still recovering from the amputation), I knew I’d met a hero I could really love—and not just because of those quietly intense swoon-worthy moments Sarah Monzon wrote so well! He’s also the more subdued counterpart to his brothers’ outgoing, flirtatious personalities, and the banter between Michael and his siblings was fantastically authentic and well-written. Just one of many highlights for me in this story.

Florence Nightingale she wasn'tBut for all Michael’s strength, he’s quietly resigned to the fact that Jack deserves more than he can give—not in a think-I’ll-go-eat-worms kind of way, simply in a this-is-the-way-it-is kind of way. And I love the way Jack dealt with that—one scene in particular! She is equally as responsible as Michael for the grab-you-in-the-feels moments in this story, and I loved that they sprang not so much from their physical attraction to one another as from the soul-deep connection that was developing between them; the ability to see and understand more than what the other was saying, and the desire to share the other’s burdens.

The historical storyline made for good reading too. You begin to get an idea of how the two stories will converge via emails that are exchanged over the development of the story, but nothing prepared me for the full revelation in the final chapters. Just perfect. And the last scene with Michael and Jack . . . slay me in the aisle! Even more perfect!

If you’re a fan of contemporary romance, you definitely want to pick up a copy of this book.

I received a copy of this novel from the author. This has not influenced the content of this review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.

Series:  #2 Carrington Family Series
Release date:  15 May 2017
Pages:  396
Publisher:  Radiant Publications

Amazon US  //  Amazon AU  //  Goodreads

~ Previous Books in Series ~

~ About the Author ~

sarah-monzon-hr-4Sarah Monzon is a Navy chaplain’s wife and a stay at home mom to the two cutest littles in the world. Playing pretend all day with them isn’t enough, she spends the evenings after their heads hit the pillow to create her own imaginary characters. When she isn’t in the world of make believe, she can be found in the pine forests of western Washington taking care of her family, fostering friendships, and enjoying all the adventures each day brings.

Her debut novel, The Isaac Project, skyrocketed to Amazon bestseller status while her Sophomore book, Finders Keepers, has finaled in contests such as the Inspy Awards and received a 4 star review from Romantic Times.

Connect with Sarah:  Website  //  Facebook  //  Twitter  //  Instagram  //  Pinterest

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About Fiction Aficionado

Homeschooling mum, word lover, reader extraordinaire, and follower of Christ
Image | This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Christian Romance, Contemporary Romance, New Releases, Romance and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to All of You (Sarah Monzon) – Review

  1. Pingback: Weekend Book Buzz – 20/21 May | Fiction Aficionado

  2. Winnie Thomas says:

    Great review! I’m looking forward to reading this soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Character Interview: Michael, Jack, Trent, and Adam from All of You (Sarah Monzon) | Fiction Aficionado

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