Louder Than Love by Jessica Topper
Publication Date: September 17th 2013 by Berkley/InterMix Penguin
About the book:
In this powerful debut novel, a young librarian grieves the loss of her husband...and discovers a love that defies classification.
It's been over three years since a train accident made a widow of Katrina Lewis, sending her and her young daughter Abbey back to the suburban town of her youth...the only place that still makes sense. Lauder Lake is the perfect place to hide and heal.
Recluse rocker Adrian "Digger" Graves survived the implosion of his music career, but his muse has long lain dormant. Until Kat hires him to play at her library—not on the basis of his hard rock credentials but rather, because of the obscure kids' TV jingle he wrote years ago. In a case of mistaken identity, Adrian stumbles into the lives of Kat and her comically lovable daughter.
Using tattoos as a timeline, Adrian unfurls his life for Kat. But as the courtship intensifies, it's unclear whose past looms larger: the widow's or the rocker's. Will their demons ever rest, or will they break these soul mates apart?
Louder Than Love was a tender and emotional story. Something I wasn’t quite expecting but I loved it even so. Plus, ex-rocker with a British accent?! Sign me up!
Kat lost her husband four years ago in a train accident, and hasn’t completely healed. She was in that blissful, mindless, overwhelming time in a marriage when it’s new, and with a brand new wonder: a baby. Plans, dreams, and the future came crashing down in that day and she went back to her hometown to survive on autopilot. Nothing like a new baby girl to keep you going, though, and Abbey, the little ball of energy, masquerading as her daughter, does just that.
While organizing PBS’s Maxwell MacGillikitty’s theme song singer (her daughter’s favorite cartoon) for a library event, she meets Adrian Graves, the singer/songwriter and they instantly have a connection. Little does Kat know that Adrian was the guitarist of the utterly famous heavy metal band, Corroded Corpse, and has his own sad story to tell. They both fall fast and hard for each other, and Adrian is enamored with little Abbey, as well. Soon they’re spending all kinds of time together, both drawn intensely to each to other. Will their past be too much for their present to bear? We shall find out.
This story was a bit different than I was expecting, especially looking at the cover. I was thinking a HOT sordid romance between the sweet innocent librarian and the worldly, wicked rocker. This was more of an emotional and real romance. Kat was a grown up woman with a daughter and real life responsibilities, and yet weighed down by a life lost. While Adrian was a rocker, he is one that is haunted by his days of debauchery and loss of friendships. Each of their past pain forms a knowing bond, an understanding between the two that not many others could have. There was a quiet intensity to their connection, but it was intense all the same. I was riveted to each page as a life that felt normal and real played out in front of me, and I was rooting for these two to get the happy ending they both deserved after so much tragedy. Kat and Adrian’s romance was soft, intense, and lovely:
“Now then, luv…I’m happy you arrived prepared, but I’m in no hurry…I plan on enjoying you at a leisurely pace.”
the only time we didn’t listen to music was when we made love—frequently, intensely, and with every nerve alive focused on each other.
Louder Than Love left me dreamily high and happy. It was a story of two unlikely people finding love and healing. Such a sweet and touching romance!
A copy was provided by Berkley Intermix/Penguin through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!