Before We Were Strangers by Renee Carlino ~ Review & Swoon Thursday

I loved this book! I was on the emotional rollercoaster... The story is told in a couple of stages and I enjoyed getting the full picture. Just get it! Read it! Now!
Title: Before We Were Strangers
Author: Renee Carlino
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance
Published: August 18th 2015

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From the USA TODAY bestselling author of Sweet Thing and Nowhere But Here comes a love story about a Craigslist “missed connection” post that gives two people a second chance at love fifteen years after they were separated in New York City.

To the Green-eyed Lovebird:

We met fifteen years ago, almost to the day, when I moved my stuff into the NYU dorm room next to yours at Senior House.

You called us fast friends. I like to think it was more.

We lived on nothing but the excitement of finding ourselves through music (you were obsessed with Jeff Buckley), photography (I couldn’t stop taking pictures of you), hanging out in Washington Square Park, and all the weird things we did to make money. I learned more about myself that year than any other.

Yet, somehow, it all fell apart. We lost touch the summer after graduation when I went to South America to work for National Geographic. When I came back, you were gone. A part of me still wonders if I pushed you too hard after the wedding…

I didn’t see you again until a month ago. It was a Wednesday. You were rocking back on your heels, balancing on that thick yellow line that runs along the subway platform, waiting for the F train. I didn’t know it was you until it was too late, and then you were gone. Again. You said my name; I saw it on your lips. I tried to will the train to stop, just so I could say hello.

After seeing you, all of the youthful feelings and memories came flooding back to me, and now I’ve spent the better part of a month wondering what your life is like. I might be totally out of my mind, but would you like to get a drink with me and catch up on the last decade and a half?

Before We Were Strangers was amazing… it gave me the feels, I tell ya! I was sad in the beginning, then I went back in time and saw the relationship between Matt and Grace grow and I was all happy… it was up and down from there. But in the end I was able to close the book with a satisfied sigh and a smile on my face because that story is what love is about!

Matt was a really nice guy! He had a passion for photography and was determined to make a career out of it. Grace loves music, she can play any instrument that she can get her hands on, but she prefers to play the cello. I loved how quirky she was, and would do anything to get free food: going to a restaurant in her pj’s to get pancakes or donating blood. I loved seeing this easy friendship grow between Matt and Grace, doing silly things together and enjoying each other's company. They were inseparable and I could see the sexual tension growing, but both were scared that they'd destroy what they had. But once they took the next step there was no denying that these two belonged together!

Jump fifteen years later, to see what they have achieved, what they lost and how they are dealing with life. It hasn’t been easy for either of them, they constantly wondered about the other, but never caught up again. But after being apart for so long I could see how much they still fiercely loved one another. I loved seeing their passion reignite, but my heart broke for Matt… you really need to read it to understand. I had tears streaming down my face as he struggled to deal with what happened.

This is the first book of Renee Carlino's that I have read and I enjoyed how easy I was able to be swept away with her writing. I felt that I personally knew both Grace and Matt. I could feel the emotions that the characters were going through, the joy, the love and the heartache! It was a beautiful read and I encourage all of you to give this book and author a try!

Complimentary copy provided by Simon & Schuster Australia in exchange for an honest review.

Matt is the sweetest guy... here are some nice moments between him and Grace.

I rolled onto my back and put my knees up, letting my dress fall to the tops of my thighs. He started snapping away.
“You’re so beautiful, Grace.”
“But do you think I'm sexy?”
“Yes. Very.”

Paperback Page 114

“Stand up, Grace.”
“Why?” I whined as he lifted me from under my arms. I looked up at his face and he was smiling, teeth and all.
“You are the cutest fucking thing in the world, do you know that?”
I crossed my arms over my chest and made a pouty face. “I was going for sexy, dammit.”
“You’re that, too. Let’s just lie down and take it slow.”

Paperback Page 115

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Renee Carlino
RenĂ©e Carlino is a screenwriter and bestselling author of romantic women's novels. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their sweet dog June. When she’s not at the beach with her boys or working on her next project, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate.

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