Title: Leaving Flowers
Author Name: Debbie McGowan and Raine O’Tierney
Publication Date & Length: May 2, 2015 – 213 pgs
Shy and awkward since childhood, Aidan Degas is now a man lost. His twin—Aidan’s other half, Nadia—died tragically young, leaving him with nothing to get him through his days but his job at the prestigious Grand Heights Luxury Apartments and the flowers he lays upon her grave. When Aidan is assaulted on the job by a tenant, it’s the graveyard he turns to for strength and solace.
Patrick loves being assistant groundskeeper at the sprawling cemetery where he tends graves and offers a bit of comfort to mourners. When he sees a sad young man lingering over an old grave, his curiosity is strangely piqued for reasons he doesn’t understand. He’s never done this—struck up a friendship with a mourner. But soon that friendship blossoms into a romance.
It’s not going to be easy for the pair. Aidan is so damaged, like petals crushed in an angry fist, and even with Patrick’s warm heart and Irish charm, it might not be enough to bring him back from the edge.
As a fan of both authors from the moment I picked up each of their books, I was thrilled to see this collaboration. It delivered on every promise I’ve come to expect from these two fantastic writers.
When we meet Aidan, he’s so lost in grief over his sister’s death that he seems to be barely managing his life. Over the course of the story, it becomes obvious that this isn’t strictly true. I appreciated the way Aidan isn’t really painted as someone needing rescue so much as someone in need of trusting the people around him to draw out his real self.
Patrick, too, has a lot of growth through the story. He comes across at first as steady and sure of himself, but his friendship and then romance with Aidan reveals a lot hidden under the surface. He says it best when he realizes it’s Aidan’s own strength, and not Patrick’s influence, that saves them both.
Readers should be aware that there are non-graphic discussions throughout regarding a sexual assault, and that carries over in a subplot for the entire novel. It’s not descriptive in any sense, but it is something to be aware of.
I have to say, I wondered where the story was going when it seemed like some of the issues were resolved by the midpoint. However, the rest of the story made sense and was an excellent continuation of what was built in the first half. There are some wonderful surprises, including finding out unexpected things about the side characters.
My favorite part of this is how the characters all have things to cope with and discover about themselves and each other, but it never feels heavy or overdone. The whole thing has a beautiful, sweet gentleness with careful attention to the sensitive emotions of the characters.
This is well written and an easy read. Its the book you can put down, but cant wait to pick back up!
Leaving flowers took me from tears to laughing a number of times. I love how well described the feelings and emotions are. Its easy to feel them through the book.
I feel that Adians connection to his twin was so strong he had all but given up on life so consumed in his grief. Patrick has a heart of gold and jumps in to help even thou he knows nothing about the situation and when they fall in love its absolutely beautiful. I love that its not perfect they are a real couple with real problems.
I like however it focuses on just how serious depression is without coming out and saying it.
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