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  • 2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

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    Contemporary Romance

    Still Air by Freya Barker A Portland, ME Novel #4 Finale of the series and wonderful indeed! Pam, manager of Florence House and Dino, cook at The Skipper, have appeared to have a negative relationship throughout the previous books – every time they are together sparks fly and hackles rise. And, that seems strange in some ways since both are such empathetic and caring individuals. Well, in this book things change and change mightily! Those sparks were not anger but chemistry and a whole lot of that was happening in a very good way, thankfully. BUT not all was rosy since Dino’s soon to be ex-wife shows up in more than one rather negative scene, his son is having major issues and his daughter starts acting up, too. Pam tells Dino something difficult for him to hear then is there for him and his family when she is needed. In fact, the entire group from the series that revolves around Florence House and The Skipper steps in to help both Pam, in her time of loss, and Dino while he deals with a whole bunch of things that are happening in his life. This was a keeper of a book and one that I did not want to end. This group of characters will live on with me into the future. I am eager to read what Freya Barker writes next and really do wonder just what that will be. Thank you to the author who bequeathed me an ARC through NetGalley. This is my honest review. 5 Stars
  • 2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    My BEST read for the year

    Freya Barker has the uncanny ability to tear your heart to peaces, stitch it up and make you crave more. And this emotional roller coaster is no different than any other incredible story ever written by this amazing author. With every single book I read by her, I think that there is no way she can make my ugly cry harder or leave me in a bigger emotional puddle after finishing the story. But she proves me wrong time and time again. So yes, Still Air, this incredible emotional book left me with my heart wide open and my eyes puffy after the countless tears I shed for the characters. This is the story of a woman who's been irreparably broken and hides her demons even from the closest to her people. It is the story of an man who though his life was good, when it exploded in his face and left him to deal with the ruins. It is the story of two people, who are scared to open up to any one, two people who lived through their own brand of hell, two people that find solace, redemption and hope in each other. Two people that save each other. I don't think I have enough words to express what an incredible book this is. The characters are very complex and well developed and feel so real that by the end of the book you feel like they are part of your circle. If you've read the previous books in the series, you already know and love them. But I can guarantee that no matter what you thought Pam and Dino's story is, you will be still surprised. They will touch corners of your heart and soul that you didn't even know existed. So be ready with the box of tissues by your side. I think there is nothing left to say except that this book, this series is a MUST read. This author is a MUST read. So if you haven't read anything by her yet, it is about time you do so. I can guarantee you won't regret it. You can read this story as a standalone, but I think you will enjoy it much more if you read the whole series in order. So PLEASE, get your #oneclick finger working and pick your copy today. That will be your best buy for the year!!! I wish I could give this book more than 5 *, ten times more, but as I can't, I will have to compromise with 5!!! This review was originally posted at Living In Our Own Story Book Blog. I received an ARC of the book in exchange of an honest review.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

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    Stunning finale to the series!~

    I could never go wrong with Freya Barker’s stories. Often times, I’ve found the final installment to be somewhat of letdown to the series. Anti-climactic and disappointing, its sole purpose is to tie up loose ends and please the reader into believing the last person standing has finally attained their HEA. But never with Ms. Barker’s books. She does each segment equal justice. In fact, I would go so far as to say that the last book to either of her series, is a culmination of their stories Still Air is about Pam and Dino. Pam has always had a significant role as both counsellor and friend to the Portland ME heroines as well as all residents of Florence House. Dino is the chef at The Skipper. He’s quiet yet observant and when he speaks, he’s insightful. The chemistry between these two is explosive, off the charts. But what I thoroughly enjoyed were the scenes with Pam and Dino’s son, Jonas. It was great to revisit with Gunnar and Syd, Viv and Ike, and Ruby and Tim. Reading the complete collection, you develop a vested interest in the rest of the group. Freya Barker makes you emotionally connect with each of her characters. Not only do you feel through them, you live with them.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    An amazing end to the series!

    While I’m sad to see this series go, Still Air was an amazing finale to this series. It’s about real, mature people with real lives and real stories. Still Air can easily be read as a standalone but the friendship and support that the entire Portland, ME family is known for continues in this book. If you haven’t read the other books in this series but plan to, read those first…there are a few spoilers in Still Air for the first few books. Pam has come across as the rock in this family throughout the series. She’s always helping others and runs the women’s shelter in town. She’s strong, independent and stubborn and does a great job of hiding her own heartbreaking story. Dino is the gentle giant that works at the Skipper and just pretty much keeps to himself. The tension between these two comes to a head in this book. They have avoided each other as much as possible in their daily lives because both of them can feel a connection to the other, a connection that scares them. The author did a fantastic job at writing these characters! They were so easy to love and I truly felt their connection. The way their story unfolds is steady and solid. Dino has been dealing with his own home-life issues and isn’t one to bring anyone else into his drama, until it reaches a peak that he doesn’t know how to deal with. That’s when he breaks down and asks Pam for help. They give in to their connection and Pam starts to open up and realize that she has a family surrounding her and she doesn’t have to do it alone anymore. The bond that these friends have is amazing. They are always there for each other, no need to ask, it’s just given. “A large, diverse and dysfunctional family—but I’ve never experienced so much love in one room.” The author has a statement at the end of the book that sums up how I’ve always thought of this series perfectly. “As with the other novels in the series, the root of the story is a true-life story, but the focus is not on the tragic events, but rather on the way our heroine copes with the turmoil in her life.”
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