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Book Review: Holding Her (The Dawson Boys Book 1) by Debbie Hyde

I am a little bias here because as someone born in Georgia, I enjoyed reminiscing about tubing down the river in Helena and other Georgian references. I can’t say any Californian has ever called me a hillbilly, though!

This review is only my own small opinion. I do not speak for all readers. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

If readers are searching for a clean, sweet love story and a novel that just leaves them with a sense that the world is good, then this novel delivers. The characters are young and innocent, and readers can enjoy their idealism as they navigate young adulthood. The novel also plays on very traditional relationship/gender roles and values.

For the characters, the author represents young adults well. Harrison’s jealousy every time anyone talks to Tru, even his friends, is a classic representation of immature young love. Harrison definitely “rescues” Tru, the damsel in the distress, so that trope is very present. The author portrayed Tru’s mother well because I absolutely despised her. She resembles parents of people I know, unfortunately and made a good villain. Harrison’s mother provided a nice contrast to Tru’s mother and showed that his upbringing was healthier. I would be curious to see how Tru develops more as she pursues the medical profession. It would have been nice to see her as a more independent person. Instead, she is very much like a Disney princess who is rescued by the handsome prince.

For the plot, I wasn’t sure where the story was going, but there was a nice plot twist, and I was ready for the drama to begin! I am okay with the way the conflict resolved, but I would have personally preferred more build up and tension.

Overall, it was good for a new adult novel and represented that age group well. I probably will not read the next book in the series just because I prefer “less clean” literature. Nevertheless, I think the author writes well for this chosen genre.

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