Reviewer: Holly and Rowena
Falling From the Sky by Sarina Bowen
Series: Gravity #2
Publication Date: February 1st 2015
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She's the woman he doesn't remember. He's the man she can't forget.
Bad boy Hank “Hazardous” Lazarus used to have everything: a gorgeous girlfriend, a career as a freestyle snowboarder and a spot on the US Olympic team. Nine months ago, after a bad crash in the half pipe, he woke up in the hospital, unable to move his legs. Now he’s landed there again, but gravity is not the culprit. With his family pressuring him to try a groundbreaking treatment, Hank self-medicates with too much tequila instead.
Doctor Callie Anders has the courage to restart a patient’s heart with a thousand volts of electricity, yet she’s afraid to risk her own. So she doesn’t confess to the clinic's newest patient they they met just before the accident, an encounter that he doesn’t remember. Even as their friendship develops, she won’t admit that she regrets turning down his dinner invitation, or that her heart stutters every time those inked shoulders roll through the door of the therapy department.
With another Vermont winter coming again, Hank needs a hand out from under the avalanche of his disappointments. If only Callie were brave enough to take the job.
This book is a standalone novel, no cliffhangers, no prior experience necessary.
"One of the highlights of my 2014 reading year." —Jane Litte at DearAuthor.com
"4.5 stars. Hank and Callie are an inspiration to love stories everywhere. HOT." — RT (Romantic Times) Book Reviews
"What a book! I’m always looking for different, inspiring, more in my books and Sarina Bowen delivers every time." — The Bookish Babe
"Sexy and heartwarming, Falling From the Sky is a story of redemption, trust and falling in love." — Mandi Schreiner of SmexyBooks
Keywords: contemporary romance, sexy romance, medical, sports, snowboarding, Vermont, sports romance, snowboard, spinal cord injury.
Warning: This review contains spoilers!
Holly: I think the blurb outlines the story pretty well, so there’s no need to recap.
I’ve been in a weird contemporary funk lately, so I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to read this book when I started it. I’m really glad I gave it at try, though, since it ended up being really good.
Rowena: I think I was getting close to burning out on paranormals so I took a break from them and picked up some contemporary NA. This one came up and I was so glad that I picked it up because Bowen delivered another story that I fell into so easily.
Holly: I really like that we got a glimpse of who Hank was prior to his accident, then watched him try to rebuild (but mostly wallow) after. I have to say, I cringed when he hit the halfpipe. My back hurt in sympathy.
Rowena: I’m with you on being glad to see Hank before the accident. To get that glimpse into the person he was BEFORE the accident. One of my favorite scenes in the book is when Hank is explaining the person he was before the accident to Callie. When he was trying to explain to her why she would have been on his radar back then. His explanation made me swoon a little. I really liked how both him and Callie tackled their issues….by just living through them.
Holly: I liked his reasons for not remembering Callie. It showed a lot more depth than I expected based on his reaction when he first met her. Though I’m not surprised Callie read the situation wrong since she was so hard on herself. I thought his reaction to having sex (and maybe not being able to) as well. That really rang true for me.
Rowena: I also really liked his reasons for not remembering Callie. I liked that whole speech he gave her and how straight up he was with Callie. There was no trying to sooth Callie’s hurt feelings or smooth things over. He was up front about everything with her. Damn, I feel like I’m making a list. I love this and this and this and this…but anyway, I also really liked every time Hank tried to get jiggy with Callie. He was a big time flirt and I loved it.
Holly: I like that Hank worked things out for himself – his new normal, I mean. No one guided him through, he just realized things on his own. I liked how dirty he was, too. Trying to seduce Callie in the therapy pool and stuff. Good on him.
Rowena: I thought it was super cute how excited he was after the first time they had sex. His reaction to all of that was priceless.
Sarina Bowen did such a great job of showing how hard things got for Hank both physically and mentally after he was injured. Seeing him go through physical therapy and enter the program with no real desire to be apart of it. I was right there with him through it all and I fell in love with him a little more with each passing page.
The thing about Hank was the wheelchair didn’t define him. He was still Hank, just a different version of himself and I loved seeing him come to terms with that. I loved seeing him going after what he wanted (Callie) like a man because too many people looked at him like he was less and he really wasn’t.
Holly: That was my favorite part of the book; Hank realizing he was more than his chair. I really loved that he decided to accept his new situation, and work with what he had.
Rowena: I also really liked Callie. She was just all around great.
Holly: I liked Callie, but I didn’t really understand why she had the issues she did. Okay, she was too busy studying to really have a social life. I get that. But still, her self-confidence is not what I thought it would be based on her age and profession.
Rowena: Hmm, I never thought about that but you’re right. Why did Callie have the hang ups that she did? Because Hank didn’t remember the first time they met? Or was it solely because of her douche of an ex? Which, kudos to Bowen for giving him what he deserves. Remember when Sherrilyn Kenyon used to make the douche exes suffer at the hands of the new guy? Ha, oh man I loved those…and I loved that Bowen made sure we saw that Peter (that was his name, right?) didn’t get off easy.
Holly: Ha! Those were my favorite scenes in Kenyon’s books. I love it when the exes get their comeuppance. I like that Nathan (that’s the ex’s name, not Peter) got his in the end, too. Served him right. That’s another thing..how was he having a midlife crisis at 30? He’s a doctor, FCOL. He’d have just barely been out of med school. Makes no sense.
I loved her sense of humor, though. She had some of the best zingers. I also liked that she stood up for Hank right from the beginning.
Rowena: I think what I liked most about Callie, outside of her humor, was the way that Hank was just a man to her. She never treated him as anything other than a man.
Holly: I agree, Hank was just a man to Callie. I like that her eyes were opened to the ways people in wheelchairs are treated, but for her they were just people like everyone else. It wasn’t like she was trying too hard or faking it, either. For her, it just didn’t matter.
Rowena: You know what I didn’t like? Bear (Hank’s best friend) bringing Hank’s ex over. WTF was that about?
Holly: Okay, at first I was super pissed at Bear for bringing Hank’s ex, too. But then I thought about it a little. He wanted to be a serious filmmaker and he was offered the opportunity to shoot a tourism video for the state of Vermont, which was a paying job. Hank’s ex was an athlete and I’m assuming the state hired her, too. So he probably didn’t have a choice. He could have given Hank a heads up, but I’m sure he figured Hank would hide if he knew, so I forgave him for that. I also forgave him for bringing he over to Hank’s house with him because 1) he wanted Hank to see he wasn’t missing anything (which he wasn’t) and 2) he said he couldn’t take anymore of her on his own (which I believed…she was a piece of work). In the end, he did Hank a favor. Hank was hung up on her, not because of her, I don’t think, but because she represented his old life. Plus, as he said, he’d forgotten all the bad about her and was wallowing about losing such a great girl. Which, hello…no.
Rowena: Bear had a choice. He could have told the ex, hell I’m terrible with names today because I can’t remember Hank’s ex’s name either. And haha, now I remember Callie’s ex was Nathan so thanks for that, that she was on her own for the night. He didn’t have to bring her at all but you are right that bringing her did Hank a favor in letting him see for himself that he wasn’t missing out on anything. I liked that he was mad at Bear for bringing her over not because he was still hung up on her but because it chased Callie away.
Holly: I agree that Bear had a choice, but he didn’t know about Callie. He watched his friend brood and mope for close to a year over a girl who wasn’t worth it – so he decided to do something about it. Was it cool? No. But I get his heart was in the right place. But yeah, I love that Hank was worried about Callie disappearing more than anything else.
Rowena: When Bear brought over the ex, it wasn’t Callie that I was initially pissed off about. It was Hank. Hank was going through some major emotional drama and I was pissed that Bear brought his past right back into his world. I got over that when I realized that it was exactly what Hank needed but at first? I wanted to punch Bear in his stupid bearded face.
Holly: I get what you’re saying. I was pissed at first, too. I just got over it as soon as I realized what his motivation was.
Holly: Can I be shallow for a minute? Hank has got to be one of the least sexy names, ever. It makes me think of someone blowing their nose.
Rowena: LOL, I hear you about Hank especially because that’s my brother’s name and even he hates it.
Holly: OMG, how hilarious was the end? I totally cracked up when Callie was like “Did you have to jump it!” and then on screen he was like “Yes, I had to.” Ha!
Rowena: The ending was great too. That whole thing with the movie and Hank’s thing at the end was all icing on an already great cake.
I’m really looking forward to reading the other books in this series. I’m going to dig into Dane and Willow’s story once I finish with the book that I’m reading right now. I can’t wait!
Holly: I’m really looking forward to the other books, too. I started Dane and Willow’s book. It’s early yet, but I’m already enjoying it.
Rowena: Overall, this book was great. I thought the pacing of the romance between Hank and Callie was good and the actual romance between the two was sweet. The set up for Bear and Stella’s book was done well too and it’s that book that I’m mostly looking forward to.
Grade: 4.0 out of 5
Holly: I was bothered by Callie’s self-esteem issues and a few other minor things, but overall I really enjoyed this, too. Their romance was sweet and I really liked Hank’s personal journey.
Grade: 3.75 out of 5
Holly’s Grade: 3.75
Rowena’s Grade: 4.0