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Anchored Hearts: An Entertaining Latinx…

Anchored Hearts: An Entertaining Latinx Second Chance Romance (Keys to… (utgåvan 2021)

av Priscilla Oliveras (Författare)

Serier: Keys to Love (2)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner
248778,405 (3.89)Ingen/inga
Titel:Anchored Hearts: An Entertaining Latinx Second Chance Romance (Keys to Love)
Författare:Priscilla Oliveras (Författare)
Info:Zebra (2021), 352 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek


Anchored Hearts av Priscilla Oliveras


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Visa 1-5 av 8 (nästa | visa alla)
Solid Slow Burn Second Chance Finding Yourself Prodigal Son Story. Think I got enough tropes in that title? ;) But seriously, this was the second book in Oliveras' hyper-sensual stories of established adults finding love in the Florida Keys (Key West, specifically) while being bound by their Cuban immigrant parents and siblings. Here, we get the sister of our male lead from Book 1 (Island Affair) and the boy we already know she let go a decade ago from that story. Now, we get a lot more details of what happened according to each of them - and they don't exactly remember things the same way. Oliveras executes this dynamic well, with having the meddling mothers (seemingly a commonality among *many* cultures, let's face it ;) ) conniving to get the two together when the now-man finds himself stranded at home with a shattered leg. As they help each other with their respective issues in their current lives, old wounds get reexamined, sparks begin to fly, etc etc etc... this *is* a romance novel, y'all. That alone tells you where this thing is going. :)

But Oliveras also executes the Prodigal Son angle particularly well, at least from the son's side. Which I know at least a bit about, having lived my adult life hundreds of miles away from my own parents. (Somewhat interestingly as it relates to this book, while Alejandro grew up in Key West and fled to Atlanta as an adult, this reviewer grew up outside of Atlanta and currently finds himself in Florida - Jacksonville - in what will this year become the longest single place he's stayed since leaving Atlanta. :D) To be clear, I don't have *exactly* the same issues Ale does - my dad (and entire immediate family) and I actually get along great. But I know the general feelings and disappointments pretty damn well, well enough to truly sing Oliveras' praises on this particular storyline.

Finally, to address one criticism that seems common in the lower starred reviews: saying something in Spanish and then explaining it in English: I'm a native American that grew up in land still literally scarred by the American Civil War. While I took a few Spanish classes in high school, I was never even truly conversant, much less fluent. But I've studied a lot about a lot, and it is my understanding that such mixtures of languages are common in second generation Americans, as both Annamaria and Alejandro are here. Further, from a "real world" perspective of trying to sell as many copies of a book as possible, English is the most commonly spoken language in the world, for better or for worse. While Spanish is frequent and indeed dominant in certain regions, even many in those regions *also* speak English to some degree or another. And in most of the globe, more people are more familiar with English than Spanish. These are also simple, stone cold, undeniable *facts* - whether or not you like them or the reason they came to be. Thus, from a *business* side, explaining the Spanish in English - and in particular the way Oliveras does it in this series, more as a natural storytelling technique than a "Habla Espanol?" "Do you speak Spanish?" style common in at least some books I've read over the years, it makes complete sense. And for this reader that barely knows Spanish at all - the above sentence was a decent part of what I can easily recall, though there is likely a fair amount beyond that that I could comprehend in a situation where I'm surrounded by the language - it is helpful, appreciated, and *necessary*, as there would be large segments of the tale that would be completely unintelligible without the translation. Indeed, from a business side Oliveras' only other real options would be to 1) limit herself to only Spanish speakers and thus lose overall sales or 2) eliminate the Spanish completely and lose at least a fair degree of the authenticity she really excels in bringing out here.

And as others have noted, this reader too is hoping that the one female character introduced late in the book is truly the fit for the one remaining single Navarro sibling - and that we get to read that tale as well. Given the year spacing between Island Affair and this book, perhaps this time 2022? Until then...

Very much recommended. ( )
  BookAnonJeff | Jul 11, 2021 |
I found this book to be plodding and full of unnecessary and redundant exposition. Several times the author would tell us something about the main characters and I though to my self, "didn't you just tell us that a couple of chapters ago?" ( )
  littlemuls | May 23, 2021 |
A delightful and rich story
4 stars

This is the second book in Oliveras’ Keys to Love series, set in the sultry Florida Keys and centred around the Navaros clan. The first book in the series was the delightful Island Affair and even though that book whetted our appetite for this second-chance romance, you don’t have to read the books together or in any order as each stands completely alone.

Anamaría is a kick-ass heroine that I really admired. She’s quick to admit her failings - perhaps too quick - but also knows what she’s working with. She’s that great blend of vulnerable and strong that makes you connect with a character and see yourself in her while also rooting for her.

Alejandro was slightly more complex and I definitely felt he had more growing and learning to do over the course of the book than Anamaría did. But I still loved him. He’s grumpy due to his injury that’s brought him back to a place that he never planned to return, but he’s also grumpy because he’s being assailed by all these memories of better times. He’s also funny, cocky and has the sweetest scenes with his little niece, Lulu. Long story short - I loved him.

Together, our couple had a delicious spark that fired up every time they were together and bantered together. For a lot of the book, it’s mostly about the pair learning about each other again, forgiving each other again and then building something of a friendship once again. It was still satisfying when they got together and I sighed at the end in sweet happiness.

But, god dammit, give me an epilogue! I beg you!

As seems to be her norm, Ms Oliveras brings us a story packed full of character and her love of the Keys just shines through. As does her knowledge and understanding of a ‘typical’ Cuban familia and comunidad. You feel the sun shining on your body, you smell the sea and the spices of the cooking and you feel the censure of the traditional mamis! She really transports you to Key West and makes it come to life. I once again played the game of trying to translate the Spanish (of which I speak none) and was very smug with myself when I got it right. But fear not, when there’s Spanish, the characters find a way to get the translation into the narrative so if you don’t understand it you’re never in the dark.

So why not 5 stars? Well, it comes down to 2 things for me. The first is that Anamaría and Alejandro were childhood sweethearts and fully committed to each other as teenagers. This kind of takes away from the ansty, first-time nerves of the pair getting physical with each other as they’ve been there and done that. So our anticipation has to be ramped up in other ways. And for the most part, it was, but Ms Oliveras is pretty much a closed-door sex scene kinda gal and with Anamaría and Alejandro’s history, I really felt we were missing something by not seeing more than we did.

The second reason for 4 stars is simply that I was looking forward to this book so much and could not wait to get my eyes on it. I had enjoyed Island Affair so much and had built this book up that, I suppose, it was never able to live up to my expectations. I wonder if it would have been a solid 5 stars had I read it as a Keys to Love virgin.

This was still a delightful book that brought me back to the heat, heart and love of Key West and the Navarro family. I really enjoyed Priscilla Oliveras’ writing style and how she brings this rich Cuban family to life for me. I look forward to Enrique and Natalia’s story which I’m hoping will be next up in a series I’m very much looking forward to continuing. 4 stars. ( )
  joreadsromance | Apr 27, 2021 |
3 out of 5 stars!

This second-chance romance features a hero who returns to his hometown due to a personal injury and the heroine he left behind. From the vibrant community and the personal connections each have with each other and their families, the couple must face their own personal issues individually and together to move forward with their lives.

Though I hadn't read the first book in this series, it wasn't a deterrent for the enjoyment of this book. I really liked the book covers of this series. The characters and the community were colorful and varied. Yet due to the visceral emotions that certain characters invoked within me, my enjoyment of this book wasn't as high as I expected it to be. But it's still a good addition to this Priscilla Oliveras series.

**Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the review copy. All opinions and thoughts in the review are my own.** ( )
  DilowRosas | Apr 26, 2021 |
Although Anchored Hearts is the second book in the Keys to Love series, it worked quite well as a standalone, although I now really want to read Island Affair.
Firefighter and personal trainer Anamaria Navarro, and world-traveling, award winning photographer Alejandro broke up years ago due to different priorities and misunderstandings. They broke each other's hearts and have never stopped loving each other. They are given a second chance when Alejandro moves back to Key West after many years away to recover from a broken leg that occurred on a photoshoot.
Their Cuban Mamis relentlessly scheme to get them back together, which adds a lot of humor to the story. Annamaria is making major advances in her career and is hesitant to have her heart broken again, but cannot deny her attraction to Alejandro. They find that the connection between them still sizzles.
There are themes of family, community, duty, priorities, reaching one's full potential, love, and mending past hurts and misunderstandings. The tropical Key West setting and mouth-watering descriptions of food enhance this spicy, entertaining romance. ( )
  PennyOlson | Apr 19, 2021 |
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