Louder Than Love. Jessica Topper. Penguin Group (USA). September 2013. E-book. ISBN #: 9781101634790.
Katrina Lewis and her very young daughter, Abbey, are putting their lives back together after their husband and father is killed in a train accident. She’s gone back to her hometown in Lauder Lake and her parents have given her their home as they intend to retire in Florida. Four years pass and Kat is still grieving while her very close friends are constantly urging her to get out and meet someone new; but they just don’t understand how deep her pain is and that functioning is as far as she can manage. She’s even revolted when an old flame attempts to seduce her; he was a loser back then and she assumes still is. Her buddies tell her everyone changes – don’t they?
As a volunteer at the local library, she knows the kids are all in love with the TV cat character, Maxwell MacGillikitty, a detective. The show is full of songs the kids love and Kat is able to track down the author of many of them and invites him to perform for the local kids and some neighboring autistic kids. When he shows up smelling like Jack Daniels and cigarettes, Kat is petrified the show will be a disaster. But Adrian Graves is bigger than a hit and the parents and children want more in the future. There’s even a proposal for neighboring communities to host his performance. But what most stands out is the electricity flying between Adrian and Kat, sparks that Kat thought she would never, ever feel again!
Due to an unforeseen medical emergency, Adrian stays overnight with Kat and they begin to get to know each other. This is really the essence of their story, the exposing of their true identity because of the suffering and joys they’ve previously known. Adrian is first to share his loss and mistakes in between the hot romance that quickly develops; however, as time goes on he’s annoyed that she doesn’t trust him enough to share her past with her husband Pete. Misunderstandings develop and they are separated for a time. There’s a surprise in who brings them together and also the fact that Adrian “Digger” Graves was once a famous rock star and just might be again if he can face up to his mistakes and musical talent. And in the middle of it all is Abbey, a bright girl who is artsy and dynamic in her own right due to the wisdom of Kat’s parenting!
Louder Than Love is a nice romance read with plenty of intimacy, passion, and intimacy on deeper and deeper levels. The characters are credible for most of the story but seem to get more complicated and confusing with the revelation of Adrian’s past career. It’s worth wading through it all just to see how it will all resolve itself! Good read!