“Falling From the Sky” by Sarina Bowen

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Storm Warning

A powerful Contemporary Romance that doesn’t take the easy Happily Ever After but Sarina Bowen goes for a “Backside 720” to give you an even better and sweeter ending than you imagined. The hero and heroine are definitely characters you grow into – not in a bad way – I mean that I felt as if I was able to really get to know them from the inside and see and feel them grow. Which was a corker. This brings me to … What is the biggest deal about “Falling From the Sky”, is that I really got into this book and I have absolutely no frame of reference for this world outside of what I see on TV during the Winter Olympics. I live in Florida. I’m 4th generation Floridian. I’ve never, by definition, seen “actual” snow. It “snowed” in Tampa in 1973 and I made a little snowman on the hood of my family’s station wagon but apparently that doesn’t “count” as seeing snow. I’ve seen flurries in Kentucky, and slush in New York City, but for those “experts” in my life, I’ve never seen snow. So skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, local hard cider – all foreign to me. But even though there wasn’t that much action in the book there was enough for me to want more of Bowen’s Gravity series. Good sign.

Dr. Callie Anders is a doctor in a small Vermont town which is having a snowboarding competition and an elite exhibition of championship snowboards on their way to the Winter Olympics. She’s there with her best friend Willow and her husband Dane (Danger) who is an Olympic skier and their baby. In about 2 months they will be in Europe watching Dane competing in the games and Callie already has her tickets. Unfortunately, Willow and her family are moving to Utah for Dane’s training and Callie has just been dumped by her longtime boyfriend and fellow doctor so her self esteem isn’t really high right now. Just as the competition is about to end Dane sees a buddy who is one of the elite snowboarders, Hank “Hazardous” Lazarus, a real contender for the Gold. Hank gives Callie the once over, then asks Dane where are they drinking later, giving him a hard time when he stalls thinking about Willow and the baby. Callie has heard that famous Local Boy is a hard partier and no where near settling down. Plus she figures she’s not in his league.

Hank drops into the pipe and starts performing his tricks and he is spectacular, until something went terribly wrong, the board hit the lip instead of the snow and the impact caused the snowboard to flex and launch him back into the air and headfirst into the ice. Spinal surgery, hospital beds, tubes, doctors, nurses, needles, charts, and more talking doctors. Not to mention his parents, bringing in the specialists, wanting answers as if he didn’t. Everything went from him being unable to be missed when being in the room to him being immaterial in the room. Only one doctor really saw him and talked to HIM … Dr. Callie. She understood when he told her he needed real food, was sympathetic when he complained about being woken up at all hours of the night, and she was the only person to stand up and tell his parents to “chill out” when they were freaking out about the conflicting diagnoses they were being given. Not to mention she was hot, built, funny, and smart.

Callie thought she wasn’t going to see Hank “Hazardous” Lazarus again except a bout of alcohol poisoning via a bottle of Tequila brought him back into the hospital nine months later. Apparently, his ex-girlfriend had gotten engaged just about the time her ex-boyfriend had gotten engaged as well. They commiserated and laugh over their failed romances/dodged bullets and Hank invites Callie to dinner. Although Callie declines Hank opens the door to a greater opportunity. The hospital is given the opportunity to run year long study on Functional Electrical Stimulation. It will be funded by the Lazarus family with the stipulation that Callie be in charge of the therapy program. Hank isn’t wild about trying out this therapy but he’ll do it if she’ll do it.

Callie has a couple of issues. Her first dilemma is that she feels that there is a doctor-patient conflict of interest if she dates Hank, even though she doesn’t prescribe him medication or is his direct line of contact, it may be a complication. Callie also has misgivings about a relationship with Hank because she saw him before the accident, she saw his girlfriend, and even though he can’t snowboard or walk he’s now almost back to being that same guy. Hot, not interested in settling down, or kids, or someone as “sensible” as she is.

Hank is stoked for the first time in a while when Callie comes into his life. He realizes how empty his house is and how “bitchy” the girls he used to date were. But he knows he isn’t the same guy he was before the accident in good and bad ways, he appreciates things now he didn’t even acknowledge before. The bad thing is he hasn’t had any interest in women since the accident except for Callie and he has doubts about himself and his abilities for the future.

“Falling From the Sky” has tremendous character development, no ifs, ands, or buts. The supporting cast is awesome – the therapy guys rock! Tiny needs a novella! I wish I had found out about this series before because now I figure I’m going to have to go back and read Willow and Dane’s story and go ahead with Stella and Bear’s story. Because I love those two as well! There’s passion, poignancy, lots of steam, and some really good intense strife.

I’m giving “Falling From the Sky” 5 Lightning Bolts and a Storm Warning!

 

This novel was provided by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

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