Review: Unbreak Me by Michelle Hazen

Title: Unbreak Me by Michelle Hazen
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 303 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


What could two troubled souls from different walks of life have in common? Maybe everything.

Andra Lawler lives isolated at her family’s horse ranch, imprisoned by the memories of an assault in college. When she needs help training her foals, she hires a Haitian-Creole cowboy from New Orleans with a laugh as big as the Montana sky.

LJ Delisle can’t stand the idea that Andra might be lonely—or eating frozen TV dinners. He bakes his way into her kitchen with a lemon velvet cake, and offers her cooking lessons that set them on the road to romance. But even their love can’t escape the shadow of what they’ve been through. Despite their growing friendship and his gentle rapport with the horses, LJ is still an outsider facing small-town suspicions.

Before they can work through their issues, LJ is called home by a family emergency. In the centuries-old, raggedly rebuilt streets of New Orleans, he must confront memories of Hurricane Katrina and familiar discrimination. And Andra must decide if she’s brave enough to leave the shelter of the ranch for an uncertain future with LJ.


Unbreak Me by Michelle Hazen is a poignant novel of healing and love.

Andra Lawler lives on her family ranch in Montana.  Following a horrific assault several years ago, she finished college then moved home in order to feel safe. She spends her days training horses and avoiding her family and friends.  But after hiring New Orleans native and horse trainer LJ Delisle, Andra gradually emerges from her self-imposed isolation. Their time together is filled with laughter as LJ charms her while teaching her cook.  Andra and LJ share a mutual attraction, but will their respective issues destroy their chance at happiness?

Andra went through an absolutely unspeakable ordeal that still affects her.  She has managed to find a way to cope with her fears, but in doing so she lives a very isolated life.  Andra is content to keep her distance other people in order to feel safe. Deciding to hire a new trainer is her first act of rebellion against her overly protective father, but will Andra continue her solitary routine?

LJ is very excited about his new job training horses for the Lawler family. He also loves living on the Montana ranch despite how very different it is from New Orleans.  LJ is fun-loving and quick to laugh but underneath his amiable exterior lies a man who never forgets the racial divide that exists between him and the rest of the world. He also carries the horrors of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.

LJ is a force to be reckoned with as he gently slips through Andra’s rather formidable defenses.  His upbeat personality is difficult to resist and soon he and Andra spend every free minute together. Their friendship is somewhat carefree but real life does intrude in unexpected ways. Just as they are beginning to explore their attraction, LJ must return to New Orleans to help his mother.  Dismayed by his departure, Andra steps out of her comfort zone and she soon discovers she is much stronger than she believes.

Unbreak Me is a heartwarming romance that features a realistic storyline and two very appealing characters.  Although Andra and LJ are from very different backgrounds, they bring out the very best in one another. Their relationship is an absolutely joy to watch unfold but there are times their inability to communicate threatens to derail their future together. Montana and New Orleans serve as the perfect backdrop for this heartfelt story and both locations spring vividly to life.  Michelle Hazen brings this engaging romance to an emotional yet uplifting conclusion.  I thoroughly enjoyed highly recommend this captivating novel to fans of the genre.

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Filed under Berkley, Contemporary, Michelle Hazen, Rated B+, Review, Romance, Unbreak Me

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