because bibliophiles require refreshment

How Forever Feels by Laura Drewry

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How Forever Feels is the final piece of her series about a tribe of friends set in Canada. I reviewed the third one over at Romance and Smut a while ago and found it delightful – and I loved this one even more! This book is about second chances and finding yourself and learning to trust what you need and what you want over the obligations life often puts on us.

Maya and Jake have known each other for four years, but have been out of touch recently to put it lightly. Here’s where things get a touch awkward – Maya was married to Jake’s best friend/foster brother who is referred to in this book as Dickhead because he cheated on her. Since the divorce, Jake and Maya haven’t seen each other until one evening in a Vancouver bar where Jake send a pina colada over to Maya.

Jake writes the scripts for video games for a living  – which totally ticks my nerd boxes. Alpha hero Jake is not which also thrilled me because I am so much more into betas. In fact, the hero of the last Dreary book I read was also a beta so maybe that’s her thing which would please me to no end. My husband worked in the gaming industry for nearly a decade, doing quality assurance for a lot of large titles. He’s the one that got me into gaming, in fact, and I resonated with that piece of this story a lot.

One piece of this story in particular is amazing to me and that’s the focus on female gamers. I don’t have any idea if this is a regular part of Drewry’s life, if she’s aware of Gamer Gate or anything else, but I loved how affirming this novel was of video games as a pastime and career focus for women. Brava, I say.

The love story is clearly complicated by Dickhead’s presence and he was my least favorite part of this. He’s still possessive over a woman he never really valued and I found myself wanting to crawl through the pages and throttle him. I felt awful for Jake feeling so stuck in the middle and wished so badly to give him a hug and tell him he was worthy of love and pursuing love for himself.

Minor trigger for child abuse in this one: Jake was in foster and group homes and suffered some of the worst parts of both of those realities. The events are described through Jake’s voice as he tells Maya of his past, so if that’s something you can’t read, be aware. It’s a small part and easily skippable if necessary.

Overall, I’d absolutely recommend this one! Grab yourself a good beer and settle in because not only is this Maya and Jack’s story, you get to spend loads of time with the rest of the tribe from the three previous books. This is a sprawling and loving friend circle who do life together in that lovely familial way.

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Further Reading:

  • Canadian Rights Council: If you’re interested in learning more about Canada’s child protection apparatus, click here.
  • “More Women Play Video Games Than Boys”: An article from the Washington Post written a wee bit back but very informative if this world is new to you.
  • 15 upcoming videogames with Female Protagonists: This one from The Mary Sue is a round up of some of the newly announced games. If you can’t wait for those, make sure to check out Dragon AgeMass Effect and Fable, which are my three favorite series where you can play as a woman or key characters are absolute badass women.

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I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Thanks! 

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