In The Last Message, Catherine Hope delivered to her readers a compelling story designed to capture the heart and leaves one believing in destiny, soul mates and the healing power of love. It’s a story of two people’s journey on the road to healing, self-discovery and love.
Title: The Last Message
A message meant for another. A love meant only for her. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.
Author(s): Catherine Hope
Published by Headline on April 11, 2023
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
If you love Holly Miller's The Sight of You, Rebecca Serle's In Five Years and Nicholas Sparks, you won't want to miss the breathtaking love story of the year that will grip your heart in every way.........................................This year I am sending my last message to you. I don't know if I'll ever be able to forgive myself, and I will never forget you, but I have to find a way to let you go.
When Lizzie is woken in the night by a text message clearly not meant for her, she is intrigued and haunted by the words she sees. After losing her beloved twin brother, she knows something of grief and the struggle to rebuild a life.
Nick, a widower for three years, is haunted by the disappearance and presumed death of his wife.
When these two lonely hearts are drawn together, an unexpectedly deep and powerful emotional connection is formed. Perhaps finally this is the chance for both of them to live again - if they can overcome scars of the past which have a longer reach than either could have imagined.
A message meant for another. A love meant only for her.
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.
The Last Message introduces readers to Lizzie and Nick. At the beginning of the story, Lizzie is taking a trip to Savage Cove, a secluded beach town. This trip is one out of many she plans to take in her attempt to fulfill a promise made to her twin brother on his deathbed. A promise which would see her fulfilling the dream she gave upon to take care of him.
On arriving in Savage Cove, she lost her phone. This led to her receiving a temporary outdated phone while waiting for the replacement she ordered. The same day she received the outdated phone, she receives a text message. Now, based on the contents of the message, she knew it was not meant for her. The journalist within her was intrigued, and she sets out to learn about the person for whom the message was intended.
During one of her many treks on the beach, she meets Nick, with whom she shares an instant connection. Nick and Lizzie like each other, but he is mourning the loss of his wife and Lizzie’s stay in Savage Cove is temporary. This made a relationship between them a challenge. However, while spending time with each other made them recognise they wanted more…. But can their love for each other overcome the grief and guilt of the past?
The story hidden between the pages of The Last Message was poignant, heartwarming and filled with inspiration. When an author has you falling head over heels for the characters, you know you have a winner. Nick and Lizzie are characters readers will have no problem falling for. They have endured so much one cannot help but root for them to find the happiness they so deserved.
The romance that developed was sweet, slow burn, closed door romance. It was a joy seeing how Nick and Lizzie’s relationship developed. It faced many challenges, but love triumphed in the end. Along with the romance, the author included an element of mystery. Although I had a fair idea of what to expect from this aspect of the story, it was still interesting to see how it all unfolded.
Now, as much as I enjoyed the story, it was not without its faults. There were a lot of details, some of which felt unnecessary, and which caused the story to drag in some parts. Also, I wanted more closure as it relates to the mystery element. The perpetrators got off too easily for all the heartache and pain they left in their wake.
Overall, The Last Message delivered a beautiful story of hope, self-discovery, healing, and love.
Read an Excerpt
A message meant for another. A love meant only for her. Read on for a sneak peek of Catherine Hope’s gripping and emotional debut novel, The Last Message…
I looked at the face of the phone and rubbed my eyes to clear my vision. There was a message. Who on earth would be texting at this time in the morning? Nobody I knew had this number.
I opened the text. I needed to read it a couple of times, as it didn’t make any sense to my sleepy brain.
“W-what . . . who . . .?”
Marissa, this year I am sending my last message to you. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive myself, and I will never forget you, but I have to find a way to let you go.
“Huh?” I blinked and ran my fingers through my hair. Marissa? I checked the time again. Only a few minutes past the last time I checked. I squinted to read the text again. There was no number showing who sent it.
Even if my first instinct was to reply, I wouldn’t be able to. There was no way I could let the sender know the message had gone astray. I gently put the phone down on the bed and sat there, thinking about it.
The message was raw. Emotional. Soulful. I kneaded my chest with my knuckles, surprised how affected I was by the despair the words conveyed. They were meant for someone else, and I couldn’t help feeling I’d intruded on someone else’s pain and heartache.
It took a moment for my heartbeat to settle down. After a quick trip to the bathroom, I shut the windows, turned off the light, and crawled back into bed. I yawned and snuggled into the pillows, desperately needing more sleep.
But I lay there, sleep now firmly out of reach. I couldn’t get the text message out of my head. I groaned and fished for the phone tangled in the sheets. I read the illuminated message again.
Either someone had made a mistake, or this number used to belong to somebody else.
Despite my curiosity, it was none of my business, but there was something so heart-wrenching about the message.
I put the phone down and fell back into the pillows. I finally nodded off again, but it was a rough sleep. I floated between waking and drifting off, constantly thinking or dreaming about the text. I couldn’t shake off the words or stop them running like a reel of ticker tape through my brain.
Finally, I gave up trying to sleep and got out of bed. I padded into the kitchen and made a cup of tea. Sticking my arms into the cable-knit sweater I’d made, with tea in hand, I grabbed a throw blanket from the sofa and went outside.
I slung the blanket around my shoulders and sat on a lounger, tucking my legs under me, hands cupping the hot mug.
The moon was full and its reflection glittered off the waves. Stars were out, but they paled in the moon’s light. I stayed, thinking and planning, until the sun rose, bathing the shore and water in gold. It was too beautiful for words. Exhaustion finally overtook me and I snuggled back into bed, knowing exactly what I was going to do about the text.
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