One woman emerging from the depths.
At the age of seventeen, Amelia Baide won silver at the Olympic Games and was the second-fastest woman in the pool. Then one tragic night she crashed into a lake and was dragged out without a pulse. Now twenty-four, she is still haunted by it and hasn’t swum again. Until this year’s anniversary of the accident. It is a day unlike any other and a strange turn of events finds Amelia back at a swimming pool.
Harry Jamieson had eyes for one girl, while women and the media had eyes for him. As a trainer of Olympic athletes, he was an in-demand man. Until one boozy morning after … But from bad luck to pure chance he runs into his old flame, Amelia, at a swimming pool no less. She doesn’t remember a thing from the night of the crash.
And Harry knows every single secret.
The pair joins forces—a comeback for Amelia and Harry’s ultimate coaching opportunity. But dodging waves is hard to do; and even the strongest swimmer may sink.
Where We Belong is a second-chance love story for young and old, for swimming enthusiasts and romantics at heart.
Where We Belong by Eve Connell tells the story of Amelia and Harry, and their bumpy path back to one another. Amelia is a former Olympic swimmer who left the pool after a horrific accident that she doesn’t remember. Harry is someone from the life Amelia had before the accident, and he’s tied into her past and present life in more ways than one.
This book initially drew me in because it’s a second chance romance. I love me a second chance romance because I love all that they’re about: second chances, trying to redo what went wrong, and fighting like crazy for everything they want.
What also drew me to Where We Belong was the aspect of swimming. Having swum competitively myself for over half my life, I was more than ready to read a book that captured the specific nuances of swimming. And let me tell you, Where We Belong delivered on that aspect and more.
What I loved about Where We Belong:
- Amelia’s faithfully strong and determined self. Amelia is a strong and determined as all get out character. You feel that through how much she fights for what she wants, and you see it immensely with her swimming, and her fight to move forward with her life. Sure she has her vulnerable moments which make her very authentic, but at her core, her strength and determination through everything she faces defines her. It just shows the level of fight she has, and it had me having mad respect for her character.
- The enigma that is Harry. Harry begins this book as a mystery of sorts. When I first read his character, I found myself wondering what he was really about and what he was really after. I wanted to know what got him to where he was, and over the course of the story I understood more and more of him, and as I got to know him I loved him more. With each piece I got of him I understood his motives more and why he did the things he did, and it showed me what he was truly about. Getting to know the real Harry was simply wonderful.
- Figuring out the whats of the past. Throughout this book you know that Amelia and Harry’s lives were both drastically changed because of the accident. But slowly and strategically over the book you learn what actually happened, and you get more and more pieces to the puzzle. The way you find out more of the what adds to the story itself, and has your mind reeling to try and figure it out. And believe me, you may think you know what happened, but trust me, you don’t.
- How taken Amelia and Harry are with one another. You can feel the connection that Harry and Amelia share with one another. You can just tell how profoundly they care for one another, and that just brings their relationship to life. You will feel how taken they are with one another in how much they fight for their shared goals, their individual ones, and in all the things they say and do. Reading their story will just show you over and over how taken they are with one another, and how far their willing to go to explore how deep their connection truly is.
- Capturing the life of a swimmer. I can’t say enough how much this author completely captured what it’s like to be a competitive swimmer. What it feels like to be in that water, what it’s like to compete, and what it’s like to strive for something you want so badly. She captures it all fantastically, and even if you’ve never swum a day in your life, you feel like you’re with Amelia on that block and swimming in that water towards the finish line. This author captured every single little nuance of swimming, and that just adds a magnificent and wholly authentic layer to this story.
- The emotional pull. This is a very emotional story because of the nature of what is told, and the author does a great job of puling you into those emotions. All those emotions thrust you into what you’re reading in such a wonderful way that allows you to experience the story that all of these characters go through. That level of connection and emotional pull will just pull you more into the story and to these fabulous characters.
- All the resiliency. These two characters are very resilient. It’s a characteristic that defines them both in a way. They’ve both gone through so much from their shared and individual pasts, and the resiliency that they have to try to overcome their pasts will just have you loving them. Their resiliency and their desire to fight to get over the darkness of their pasts will make you want to fight right along with them to get them right to where they want to be. That level of resiliency and how it takes shape in these characters will honestly just make your heart happy.
- The writing. This is this author’s debut novel, and I have to say that her writing was fantastic. She captured both points of views wonderfully, and allows you to really step into their minds. She also writes a very intricately developed story, and her writing style just captures everything surrounding the events of this book. The writing of this book just envelops you into it all and allows you the chance to experience the competitiveness with swimming, the trauma of Amelia and Harry’s past, and the many heart racing and pulling events that make this book what it is.
Where We Belong was an overall fantastic book that tells the story of two characters fighting their pasts in order to find a future together. There are many twists and turns on their journey forcing them to give it all they got, but I promise you’re going to love seeing them attempt to figure it all out.
Amelia and Harry’s story is emotional and it’s going to pull at your heart like crazy, but you’re going to love what you experience with these two. You’re going to love seeing them attempt to navigate the bumpy waters of their past, present, and future, and you’ll be rooting with all you’ve got that they can figure out what it is that’s going on between them.
This story is about second chances, fighting for what you truly desire, and giving it all you’ve got until the very last second because in that last second, in that last fight of umph is when magic can really happen.