So starts Aaron Paul Lazar’s contemporary romance, THE SEACREST (ISBN13: 978-1493548675; ASIN: B00G1TDBRI; 286 pp), and an affair of hearts between Finn McGraw and the love of his life that spans more than a decade, weathers bliss and turmoil, and even marriage to other partners.
THE SEACREST opens on July 2, 2013 as police deliver the devastating news to Finn that his brother’s car has plunged over a cliff, killing both occupants. Both occupants? That’s right. Finn’s brother Jax, dead. Finn’s wife Cora, dead.
But wait, Cora in the car with Jax? That’s impossible. They hardly knew each other. Why, Finn and his brother haven’t spoken in years. Not since . . .
Using the date as his catalyst, author Aaron Lazar artfully transports Finn’s thoughts to another sultry July 2nd afternoon thirteen years earlier - when the first life-altering tremor of change shook his world. The day he fell in love.
Finn McGraw wasn’t looking for love on that crowded beach in 1997. Being seventeen was all about school, working his father’s blueberry farm, and Finn’s art. There were some who claimed he had a talent for sketching and portraits.
But love is what Finn found that day - or perhaps, as fickle fate would have it, love found Finn.
For his first venture into the romance genre, Aaron Lazar captures the essence of young love with all its sweetness, naïveté and splendor. And he paints those scenes with as tender a hand as young Finn has for his girl.
Until her love turns to loathing and she heads off to her exclusive boarding school in Switzerland. Why? What did Finn do to spur such hatred?
In THE SEACREST, Lazar encapsulates the heartbreak of young love with equal finesse - the loss and longing, the confusion - while inviting readers along as he weaves in layers of mystery and lingering questions. Who was responsible for the fire that killed Finn’s parents and younger sister? What vile act caused Finn to turn his back on his brother, his one remaining family member? To let hatred fester? To set his art aside?
And what of Cora and Jax? The idea of an affair is unthinkable. Though it’s true that Cora’s death opens an avenue of rekindled love for Finn.
At first, I wasn’t sure I would like Aaron Lazar’s technique of alternating the past and present from chapter to chapter. But as THE SEACREST progressed, this methodology developed a rhythm. I knew what to expect and found myself looking forward to delving further into Finn’s past, and perhaps answering some of those lingering questions.
I found THE SEACREST an enjoyable read and a tender love story worth relishing. I’m giving this one four stars and sincerely hope it will not be Lazar’s only foray into the romance genre. Now . . . I’m off to purchase another of this talented writer’s books.
Aaron Paul Lazar writes to soothe his soul. This bestselling Kindle author of three addictive mystery series enjoys the Genesee Valley countryside in upstate New York, where his characters embrace life, play with their dogs and grandkids, grow sumptuous gardens, and chase bad guys.