Charlize ‘Charlie’ McCloud, widow and mother of two young children, is agonizingly content living in the past. Her secluded life on a sprawling central Texas ranch provides the perfect dreamscape to obsessively reconnect and reminisce about her college sweetheart—her first and only love—Cash McCloud.
“LUST is a thief, she thinks to herself, correcting Cage, the superficial carnal urge a malignant assault on one’s senses, making fools of otherwise rational beings. At least there is honor in LOVE,…”
“No matter how or why his life was cut short, you have to know that the life he lived was everything he wanted it to be.”
This was not what I was expecting as it was a rather melancholy story. Basically the woman is grieving throughout most of the book, which proves to be a rather long and drawn out process as she is still grieving for her husband 3 years after his death, while raising small children, running a ranch and a record store, writing songs, and communing with his spirit every night while taking moonlight horse rides around their property or visiting his gravesite. She feels guilty and adulterous for considering a relationship with another man. How she has energy for all this can only be explained by the fact that she hasn’t had sex or a man to bother with in over three years. This is more of a family drama than a romance, although I guess you could count her memories of her husband as a romance, but a new relationship finally starts up nearly half way through, stalls due to stubbornness, then starts up again right before the end. Her memories of her husband recalled during her night rides are sweet and wistful, but of course no one is as perfect as the most precious memories we chose to remember.