First off, Sarina Bowen is one of my all time favorite authors! Her Ivy Years series, and True North series is amazing, and the books she wrote with Elle Kennedy, Him and Us and WAG’s have been amazing! I am thankful I’ve been on her ARC team since last year when she first released Bittersweet. Her character Zach from Keepsake (True North #3) is probably my favorite main male character I have read. Her stories and characters are unique and absolutely addicting!
Goodbye Paradise was originally released under the title In Front of God and Everyone under Sarina Bowen’s other pen name Nealy Wagner. She is now re-releasing Goodbye Paradise and Hello Forever as Sarina Bowen. I cannot tell you how excited I was when I found out about these books. I never knew about them when they were originally released, so I am so happy she decided to release them again under her name.
Most people called it a cult. But for twenty years, Josh and Caleb called it home.
In Paradise, there is no television. No fast food. Just long hours of farm work and prayer on a dusty Wyoming ranch, and nights in a crowded bunkhouse. The boys of the Compound are kept far from the sinners’ world.
But Joshua doesn’t need temptation to sin. His whole life, he’s wanted his best friend, Caleb. By day they work side by side. Only when Josh closes his eyes at night can they be together the way he craves.
It can never be. And his survival depends on keeping his terrible desires secret.
Caleb has always protected Josh against the worst of the bullying at the Compound. But he has secrets of his own, and a plan to get away — until it all backfires.
Josh finds himself homeless in a world that doesn’t want him. Can Caleb find him in time? And will they find a place of safety, where he can admit to Josh how he really feels?
This book was absolutely amazing! I fell so hard for these characters and this story.
Sarina Bowen creates so much emotion in her stories. You just develop this deep connection to the characters that she writes and you become emotionally invested in them. When they are happy, you are happy, when they are devastated, so are you. When one of them does something stupid, you want to reach through the pages and smack them upside the head. There were 2 scenes that stuck out to me the most that really showed so much emotion and really connected me to the story. The first was at the bus stop at the beginning of the story. You could just feel the emotions flowing off the page and how heartbreaking it was for Caleb when he found Josh. The second was about 3/4 of the way through when Josh and Caleb were going through a hard time and were fighting. The emotions flying from Josh just felt so real. It’s always the hardships and how the characters get through them that really draws me in, and Sarina Bowen is a master at sucking you into her stories.
I don’t want to give too much away, because you just need to experience this book for yourself. I will say all of the secondary characters were really great. Also just an interesting fact, the cult that Josh and Caleb come from is the same cult that Zach (a character from the True North series) came from, and Zach is even mentioned in this book once.
I highly recommend this book! You won’t be disappointed!
About the Author
With Elle Kennedy, Sarina is the author of the RITA award winning HIM, and its sequel, US, as well as the WAGs novels.
Sarina also has a new Vermont contemporary romance series, True North. She’s also unrolled new hockey novels from Penguin Berkley including Rookie Move.
Sarina enjoys skiing, espresso drinks and the occasional margarita. She lives with her family, eight chickens and more ski gear and hockey equipment than seems necessary.