BOOK REVIEW: Heartscape (Vino & Veritas #2) by Garrett Leigh

BOOK REVIEW: Heartscape (Vino & Veritas #2) by Garrett LeighHeartscape (Vino & Veritas #2)
by Garrett Leigh
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

From award-winning author Garrett Leigh comes a gorgeous new romance in the True North world! Think: great food, burly men and good times. Beards are optional but encouraged.

I’m not the obvious choice to run Burlington’s coolest wine bar—quiet, brooding, clueless about tannin content, and always one wrong turn away from another downward spiral.

But no one seems to mind that I'm a wreck. Besides me. I just focus on getting through each shift until the night a beautiful stranger appears, looking as lost and damaged as I feel.

When a mutual friend calls in a favor, the sexy newcomer winds up crashing on my couch. I don't know if it's his melodic Cornish accent, or his ocean blue eyes, or the rock-hard body with the mysterious scars, but I get the feeling whatever happened to him runs far deeper than those wounds.

Having Jax in my home makes my chest warm. Makes me shiver. Makes me want more. But I've got a pile of baggage and I don't want to be a burden on anyone let alone a man who seems to have enough demons of his own.

Our chemistry is off the charts. His arms feel like home. The last thing I want is to screw this up. Is it wrong to hope we can heal each other? Or will one of us die trying?

HEARTSCAPE is a heartfelt MM friends-to-lovers romance in the True North world, with a brooding bartender, a rugged outdoorsman, sweet angst and lots of Shipley cider. Triggers: contains mentions of depression, suicidal ideation and PTSD recovery.

Review

My favorite thing in immersing myself into this World of True North project so far has been that every book is so uniquely different. So many new authors, new writing, new characters–all wrapped up in a world I already know and love. Sometimes when you find yourself reading romance after romance, they start to blend together. I forget which names belong to which books and the tropes begin to loose that freshness they once had.

Something about this book was different. I don’t know if it was because I haven’t read a romance more on the angsty side in a while but Heartscape resonated deep within my bones. Tanner, manager of Vino and Veritas, and Jax, Cornish wildlife photographer both have their fair share of inner demons. Both have had terrible things happen to them at different points in their lives and bear those invisible scars the best they can. When a mutual friend and freak accident find them crossing paths, the two are immediately drawn to one another.

Leigh did an excellent job with drawing out both of their histories so that we only got little snippets here and there as Tanner and Jax became more and more comfortable around one another; more willing to open up. She also does an amazing job depicting all of VERY raw internal thoughts and feelings of both men. The different aspects of both of their mental heath issues are NOT taken lightly and I know I personally could tell she did her research.

Overall, while there weren’t many parts of this book that were “easy,” I felt that the way in which Tanner and Jax fell into a relationship was. It was quite obviously they were made for each other and even now, just thinking about how obvious their love for each other was just makes my heart so happy *cries* lol. Such a great book.

It’s Jax. It’s me. It’s the heartscape we’ll leave behind when we’re gone.

Huge thanks to Heart Eyes Press for allowing me to read an eARC of this book in exchange for my honest review!♥

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2 Comments

  1. Wonderful review! I have the first three in this series, and I’m hoping to start the first one ASAP. I love that I know a lot of the authors but that I’ll be discovering some new ones too. Leigh is a favorite of mine, so I’m glad that you really loved this one. I do love an emotional read that is done well.

    -Lauren
    ShootingStarsMag recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Books With Funny TitlesMy Profile

    • Arielle

      April 8, 2021 at 10:43 am

      I think one of the best parts about this project is the number of new authors I’m discovering! So fun! Hope you enjoy

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