Kate Walker used to believe in true love and happily ever after. While her own love life may have left her brokenhearted, it hasn’t kept her from churning out made-for-TV romance movie screenplays…until a major career slump and a longing to do something meaningful send her running back to her hometown of Maple Valley.
Permanently sidelined by an injury, former NFL quarterback Colton Greene is temporarily hiding out in a friend’s hometown to avoid the media and the reminders of all he’s lost. Maple Valley seems like the perfect place to learn how to adjust to normal life. The only trouble is, he’s never really done normal before.
While Kate plays things safe and Colton is all about big risks and grand gestures, they both get what it’s like to desperately need direction in life. An unexpected project gives them both a chance to jumpstart their new lives, but old wounds and new dreams are hard to ignore. Starting over wasn’t part of the plan, but could it be the best thing that’s ever happened to them?
From the Start is the first book in Melissa Tagg’s Walker Family series, and is also the first book I have ever read by her. Well, I halfway take that back, I did read her e-book prequel to this series—called Three Little Words—but I’m not entirely sure that counts since it was only a hundred pages. But still… oh my word. That’s all I have to say about From the Start. That’s my entire review, the end, I’ve already hit the fainting couch once again. Seriously though, I loved this book. Loved it, loved it. There was so much raw pain, witty humor, and passionate love that I couldn’t feel anything but adoration for Melissa and this novel. I absolutely melted my way through this fabulous story, and I cannot wait to read more of Melissa’s work. She does a wonderful job of weaving together all of the wonderful aspects of the story I just mentioned, as well as just the perfect amount of spiritual themes and realizations by each of the characters, and that just goes to show how extremely talented she is.
One of my favorite things about Kate Walker is the fact that she is an author, and a romance author at that. Since I’ve written quite a bit in my lifetime—though I’ve never really finished anything—I love reading about other writers who have made the transition to author, whether real or fictional. On top of that though, I really love the fact that Kate is able to come up with such funny quips, and I adore her relationship with little Brayden (you’ll meet him later). Though she struggles with the walls around her heart and what she’s going to do since she’s facing another wall in her career, she’s still able to really be there for her family and for Colton, and that is the biggest thing that I admire about her. That’s one thing about these types of books that makes them all that much more my favorites; sometimes they teach you how to really love.
Speaking of love, let me talk about Colton Greene for a moment. If anywhere there’s a swoon waiting to happen, it’s not anywhere near Colt because you would have swooned long ago. At least once. Even though he does have his rough patches, who doesn’t love a broken hero, and he is by far one of the sweetest heroes I have ever encountered. He does so much to help Kate’s dad get his depot back on its feet, and on top of that, he does so much for everyone else that I can’t help but finding myself wonder if men like him really exist, because if they do I’m pretty sure everyone would be running to snap them up. And those of you who are regular readers here on my blog would know that I am a HUGE football fan, so that aspect of this book made it all the more likely to end up on my all-time favorites list.
Let me take just a moment to talk about Three Little Words. I feel like I didn’t really do more than mention it in passing, and since it isn’t going to get its own review, it deserves more than just a sentence. That prequel was the perfect way to start off this series, and I highly recommend reading it before jumping into From the Start. It focuses on Kate’s cousin Seth Walker, and Ava Kingsley, who went to college with him. It is a super cute and sweet story, and after reading it I knew I would enjoy reading the full length books of the series.
Well, if you haven’t figured it out by now; I’m giving From the Start all five bookshelves for being an outstanding novel that I really enjoyed, and I’ve already added it to my all-time favorites list. Melissa is definitely a super talented author, and I give her a huge round of applause for putting together this wonderful example of a good Christian fiction novel. I cannot rank this book any higher; I implore you to give it a chance. Start with Three Little Words, read this novel, and then look out for Like Never Before, which comes out in early April (sooooo not soon enough).
To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.