Title: After She Falls by Carmen Schober
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Genre: Contemporary, Christian, Romance
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
She’s always had that fire in her. She just needs to find it again.
Strong-willed Adri Rivera nearly achieved her goal of being a professional mixed martial artist, but then she fell in love with a man who knocked all the fight out of her. When their abusive, tumultuous relationship finally comes to a head, Adri flees with their young daughter to her small hometown in the mountains of Pennsylvania. There, she must face the people she left behind and put her broken life back together again.
A hardened Max Lyons can’t believe Adri is back in town after abruptly cutting him and everyone else off years ago. Despite the distance that grew between them, he feels compelled to help her regain her independence and offers her a job at his gym. But regaining each other’s trust is another matter, made even more complicated by the lingering spark between them. As Adri dares to pursue her dream again, she trains for a big tournament with Max’s help, but they’ll both have to confront their own doubts in order to rise victorious.
After She Falls by Carmen Schober is a heartwarming Christian novel of new beginnings, healing and love.
After years of abuse, Adri Rivera finally realizes her husband, Owen Anders, is not going to change. She seizes the opportunity to leave with her young daughter Eva and returns to her small hometown in rural Pennsylvania. Her beloved Uncle Roman welcomes them with open arms and gives her the space and time she needs to begin to recover. Jobs are scarce so Adri reluctantly works for her former best friend Max Lyons who has yet to forgive her for breaking his heart. With plenty of encouragement from her new co-workers and her uncle, Adri decides to give her dream of becoming an MMA fighter another shot. With Max agreeing to temporarily coach her, will she achieve her goal? And can Max finally forgive Adri for hurting him so deeply years earlier?
Adri grew up in an abusive household and her mother abandoned her when she was a little girl. Her aunt and uncle were thrilled to raise her but Adri always closely guarded her heart. With Roman’s encouragement, she put in many hours working toward becoming an MMA fighter. Growing up, Max was her best friend and their relationship gradually turned into romance. But when Adri meets Owen, she seizes the chance to leave her small-town roots behind her. Unfortunately, she soon realizes she made a terrible mistake, but for the sake of her daughter Adri decides to stay with him.
Max never planned to become an MMA fighter. But with his heart broken by Adri, he throws himself into fighting. He eventually turns to coaching, but he soon moves back to Sparta to open a gym. Max is restless when Adri shows up with Eva and he reluctantly hires her to work for him. He is not at all enthusiastic about coaching her, but he is willing to put aside his reservations until she can find a new coach.
After She Falls is a captivating novel of faith, family and starting over. Adri holds her emotions in her check and finds it difficult to talk about her problems. Her newfound faith is a large part of her healing process and this leads to a few issues with Max who is not religious. Their relationship is precarious and it does not take much to put them at odds. With a charming cast of characters and a unique storyline, Carmen Schober’s debut novel is well-written, engaging and quite engrossing. Readers are sure to fall in love with this heartfelt romance.