Sacred Hearts by Dev Bentham (Tarnished Souls #3)
December 18, 2012
Reviewed by Mandi
David Schwartz is devastated to discover his partner has not only started gambling again, but has wiped out their joint bank accounts in the process. This means that David has no money to keep his beloved restaurant open, and must close and sell of everything in it. Kicking his partner out of his life is only the beginning of what is ahead for David. He moves in with his father, which just depresses him even more, but then an opportunity arrives. A friend offers him a catering job on a movie set in Puerto Vallarta for a few weeks. Saying goodbye to the cold, he flies down and immerses himself in this new culture. It is here he meets the mysterious John Giovanni and thinks a brighter future just may be in his grasp.
This is the third book in the Tarnished Souls series, each centered around a Jewish holiday and for the most part I enjoy Dev Bentham’s voice. Every one of her books has characters that have to overcome struggles and each one feels different than the last. Here, we have David who not only has to restart his life again but it is a life that he has already struggled so much with. We learn early on that David is a recovering alcoholic, and in this book he frequents AA meetings when life becomes a bit too much. What I really like is that this is just part of who he is and it is not presented nor played out in an overly dramatic fashion. He never feels threatened to return to drinking, it’s just part of his life and who he is.
I found this book has a lovely story about David and how he overcomes obstacles to succeed and find love in life. Unfortunately, I feel like John gets left out. David randomly meets John in Mexico. They meet in dark, secluded places for a quickie, and John often flees afterward. Answers soon come to light as to why John is so skittish but I feel like we really don’t get to know him, which made it hard for me to invest in their romance. Their romance never fully engaged me. I found myself wanting David to be happy and find peace, but I honestly felt totally indifferent to John.
I still enjoyed reading the book, but the romance could have left a greater impact with me. There is something about this author’s voice though that leaves me wanting more and more of her books every time I finish one. If you want to try her I recommend starting with Moving in Rhythm or Fields of Gold.