Review: Retrace by Sigal Ehrlich


Title: Retrace
Author: Sigal Ehrlich
Date of publication: 6 Nov 2014
Genre/Themes: Romance, New Adult

Author's links: Website / TwitterFacebook / Goodreads

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My rating: 3 stars


Nia Martins believes a fresh start will help her leave her traumatic past behind. Moving to a different country, she seeks to shake off her demons by doing the one thing that sets her free from her destructive thoughts – teaching dance. But change doesn't come easy, and all Nia really wants is to take the next breath without the perpetual suffocation that follows.

Reeves Mitchell has looked death in the eyes so many times it’s become habitual. That is, until his best friend's life was on the line. When the one thing he feared the most turns into reality, all he can do is pick up the pieces of his loss. As Reeves tries to live with the constant thought of “what if” gnawing at the back of his mind, he persistently and steadily builds a thick wall around himself.

Their solitary lives are all they have—until fate brings them together. Nia and Reeves’ new friendship helps make life, shadowed by the ghosts of their past, more bearable. But as their relationship deepens and new, suppressed feelings emerge between them, are they willing to retrace their steps back to where wounded hearts can be broken once more?


This is my first book by this author and I was drawn to it by the beautiful cover and the premise of a romance between a dancer with a broken soul and a dangerous, tortured hero What a got was a nice, albeit passionate romance but I felt the story lack depth to be a more memorable read. 

It's told from dual POV which I quite liked since we get to be in the head both of Nia and Reeves. Their voices were rather distinctive and revealed their background and personalities quite well.

There is a lot of telling in this story and not enough showing. We learned certain facts from the character's background but they are told as simple facts and their impact in the characters' present was not shown. Nia's dancing was supposed to be central to the story but it didn't feel that way to me - she could have been doing anything else. On the other side, Reeves' military/FBI past was rather violent but it was also toned down a lot. The emphasis was just on their growing attraction and it didn't feel very authentic to me

They both developed feelings for one another beyond the strong chemistry and lust, yet they kept denying them at every occasion, both to themselves and to the others. It was immature and it didn't fit two grown-up with turbulent pasts and some/considerable life experience.

There a bunch of secondary characters appearing in this story - some with considerable page time, others - just making a brief appearance. They were interesting but didn't add much to the story of Nia and Reeves. I was particularly annoyed with Kate, Reeves' best friend's sister. She was this shy girl with a crush on Reeves, then we see her acting completely out of character, being mean and spiteful and doing some crazy things.

The story started, the prologue especially was very powerful, but things slowed down considerably towards the middle. Both Nia and Reeves were stuck, not admitting their true feelings. This said, the book ended on a positive note with a great epilogue.

Overall, it was a nice read, though it had a bit too New Adult feel to it - a lot of angst and some melodrama. I expected a more adult romance with deeper/darker emotions but fans of stories with tortured, broken heroes and heroines finding their HEA, should give this story a try. I believe they will enjoy it more than me.

Purchase link: Amazon

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