Published by tryst books on april 6, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Adult Romance 18+, Contemporary Romance, New Adult
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Freshly minted grad Emilia Noble arrives in Costa Rica to teach English in the tropical community of Pacifica. Its carefree, pura vida lifestyle is a welcome contrast to her dark and wintry origins. Tossing caution aside like an old winter coat, she plunges headfirst into an exotic cocktail of sensory pleasure.
Diego is a local whose surfer body and cool detachment make Lia buzz with a long-lost thrill. Fascinated by her new environment, she can’t help but wonder about the moody inner workings of the boy with triceps like Wolverine and a grimace to match.
Diego seems to have no problem ignoring Lia, though. Caught up in his family’s conflicted attitude toward foreigners, he notices her only when it’s convenient. But as Lia thrives in her new surroundings, Diego might just find reason enough to defy his embattled, insular father. When north and south are mixed together, the results are intoxicating.
it has been a long grey winter here in the uk. i have been longing for my southern sunshine and warm air with such a painful longing as spring has been relentlessly teasing its arrival for weeks. since it might be a few weeks before long sleeves and jackets can be put to bed, i thought what better way to feel the sun’s rays then in the pages of a hot and summery book. audrey o’connor’s debut novel lessons in pure life provided such an opportunity.
as i had no reference point for audrey’s books or writing, i wasn’t sure what to expect. i merely had the pull of the synopsis and my gut pushing me to dive in. it is a story of young love softened by the fresh bloom of youth. but there was a grounding as while lia and diego are young they have lived and suffered at the hands of life and it brings a refreshing reality to what it means to be fallibly fragile and accepted for instead of in spite of.
there was a boozy languid ease to lia’s acclamation to this new life in the heady paradise of pacifica. i can feel the salt on my skin and smell the hints of coconut on the breeze. it was light despite being heavy and was the perfect story to fantasize reading upon my favorite stretch of beach.
my only complaint was i felt parts with the supporting characters needed filling out. i felt lia’s cousin kathryn seemed to disappear in the midst lia’s blossoming romance. i wanted more of diego’s family dynamic and his close friend jose. it felt as if i was only getting the tip of a massive iceberg, but i am hopeful there will be a followup where we might revisit some of these fascinating characters.
if you are looking for a cool drink with the sultry feel of summer, i would recommend audrey’s debut novel.
as always, these are my thoughts and opinions based on my preference as a reader.