“The History of Us” follows Andrea and Dustin in a dual POV tale as a shared betrayal brings these ex high school sweethearts back together. Andrea and Dustin first met when Andrea’s father represented Dustin and his siblings after a tragic event took their parents from them at a young age, and once the two met, the rest, as they say, is history. Thrust back together over a decade later, the two must examine how and why they broke up so suddenly in their senior year, and get past their own misgivings and hurts toward the other in order to track down a thief who took advantage of both Dustin’s family, and Andrea by stealing her father’s—suffering from Alzheimer’s disease—prized coin collection. As far as second chance romances go, which can be tricky depending on why the couple broke up to begin with, this one really hits the sweet spot.
First things to note about this romance: if you’re looking for super steam, keep walking. The romance in this is incredibly sweet and tender, but the “spice” happens off page, which I was honestly fine with! It fit the tone of this story very, very well. But also note that part of the book can be a little painful… Alzheimer’s is a devastating disease for everyone involved, and Andrea does her best to always take care of her dad, but it can be very painful to see her go through that, and how her mother chooses to deal with his diagnosis as well. I applaud the author’s ability to both treat Alzheimer’s disease and those who suffer through it with dignity, but also not shirking from the reality of the toll it takes. So, just know that going in, that while this is very much a sweet, second chance romance, the book does deal with heavier topics and doesn’t shy away from the dynamics and resentment of the mother/daughter relationship when it comes to caring for Alzheimer’s patients, as well as the complex relationship of siblings forced into parental roles.
The book starts off really strong, but the middle does suffer from a bit of a lull where things, especially the hunt for the person who stole Andrea’s coins, feels like it comes to a halt. Things do pick up again, and I really loved how this book ended, but I did find myself wanting to speed through that middle section. Plus, one of Dustin’s siblings annoyed me to no end. I won’t say who to avoid all spoilers, but while I definitely could sympathize with the character, their aggressively blind devotion to their partner felt like too much at times, and I was more frustrated by them then I ever felt empathy for their plight. Ultimately, that’s why this gets 4 stars from me, the romance was sweet, the “mystery” fun even if it wasn’t that mysterious, but that lull and the sheer frustration I had for one character did suck some of the enjoyment away, but all in all, that’s just my personal taste. If you want a sweet, PG-13 romance with a sprinkling of mystery, I highly recommend this beauty! And thank you to the author and Literary Bound Tours for providing an ARC for an honest review!
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