by Melanie Moreland
When I started reading “Shifting Gears” by Melanie Moreland, I thought I was prepared. I knew who the characters were from previous books in the ‘Reynolds Restorations’ series, of which this is the third story. I knew that the author crafts stories that touch the heart. Still, I wasn’t prepared for Brett and Kelly. You can enjoy this book as a standalone, though I strongly suggest you start at the beginning of this terrific series because you’re understand all of the secondary characters even better, and where Brett and Kelly fit in the universe of them.
Brett is a good guy and a good friend, but something of a loner. He loves his work, and he loves his Dad, even though they don’t have a close relationship anymore. Kelly is a photographer’s assistant, and a talented photographer herself. She’s also the best friend of the wife of one of Brett’s best friends/business partners. Every time they meet, the chemistry between Brett and Kelly is as combustible as gasoline thrown into a fire. Yet, after she stays for a a short time, Kelly always leaves and every time it breaks his heart a little more. This time when she comes back he’s steeled his resolve against her – but he can tell something’s wrong, and he’s worried; he cares so much, even though he doesn’t want to care at all. Kelly really irked me for a good while, then bit by bit the pieces came together and … well, I don’t want to ruin it for you, so you really should just read the book and experience it for yourself.
The secondary characters were fantastic, and a subplot I never expected made my heart so happy! Dialogue and banter among all the characters was excellent, and the laugh-out-loud moments beautifully balanced the serious ones. This book will shred your heart into jagged little pieces and then restore it to pristine condition, leaving you with the warm, fuzzy feeling that only a wonderful book can bring. Be advised, along with the book you’re going to need a couple of tissues and your favorite comfort items. I also suggest trying to read this when you’re likely to have few or no interruptions until you finish, because you’re not going to want to put it down.