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In a sprint, every millisecond counts.
When you’re waiting for love, those milliseconds can feel like eons.
High school senior Lucas Preston has it all: star of the track team, a scholarship waiting for him, an apartment to himself and a revolving door of girlfriends. He also has an older sister, five younger brothers and a father who relies on him to make sure those brothers don’t kill each other.
His saving grace? Lois “Laney” Sanders, a girl he started to fall in like with when he was just eleven.
A girl who became his best friend, his confidant, his courage.
It took only sixteen clicks and eight seconds for Lucas to realize that his like for Laney had turned into love.
Eight life-changing seconds.
It’s also the exact length of time it took to lose her.
Find Lucas on Goodreads
“Love hard, love fierce, but love right”
Once again, Jay McLean has taken my heart, toyed with it, shattered it, put it back together again and left me with a massive book hangover, awestruck over the emotional intensity of all that I just read. Just… wow.
McLean writes wonderful YA/NA stories, getting us to the heart of her characters, making us relate to them and love them – even when they screw up – making us feel everything right alongside them, and completely sweeping the reader away into a new world. And she’s done it once again with Lucas. Funny, smart and romantic, this is a story of childhood best friends who grow to become more, full of all of the intensity of first, all-consuming love. But it’s also so much more than that – it’s a coming-of-age story that is surprising, angsty, dramatic and emotional. I was completely absorbed by this story from start to finish, I devoured it one sitting, and I absolutely loved it.
“Don’t you want to be the first to touch something? To reach out and grasp onto the world around you? You can’t touch it if you can’t see it.”
17 year old Lucas is the younger brother of Lucy Preston from the More Than series. He was introduced in More Than Forever, and I knew then that I needed to know more about this complex, loveable character. But this book can easily be read as a standalone.
Lucas is the eldest boy in a family of seven children. Lucy is the eldest, then him, followed by their five younger brothers. Since the tragic death of their mother, Lucy stepped in to care for her family, but now that she is off in College, Lucas is the glue holding it all together. His family is close, loving and supportive – and absolutely hilarious – and Lucas’ loyalty and devotion to them is beautiful to see. And that loyalty and devotion is shared with one other person – the most important person in Lucas’ life, his best friend, Lois.
Lois was dubbed ‘Laney’ as the Lois Lane to his Clark Kent when they met as 11 years olds. They instantly became the best of friends, and in the six years they been glued to each other’s sides, they have shared absolutely everything with each other – except the fact that they are both wildly in love with the other.
I loved Lucas and Laney’s relationship. They really are the centre of each other’s worlds, and their closeness is beautifully explored both in the present day and through flashbacks to their childhood.
“My own home doesn’t feel like home unless you’re there.”
Their unwavering friendship is strong and necessary to both of them, but we can see that there is more – they both know what they feel for the other, but both of them hold back, unsure of how the other feels.
It didn’t take me long to get into the feel of this book, and the sense of anticipation builds beautifully between Lucas and Laney. But it’s not one of those books where I was reading just waiting for them to get together. I cherished every moment of their friendship, and the time they spent together, and I loved them as best friends before they ever became more. But when they do, it’s beautifully done, with lots of emotion, and it all felt very real and very natural.
“I came here for you.”
“Because I want to kiss you.”
But just when it seems they’re going to have what they’ve both wanted for so long, their story twists in the most unexpected of ways.
That’s all I’m going to say about the story, because it’s one of those books that you truly need to dive in and experience without knowing any details. It definitely took me by surprise, but it’s wonderfully written and I could not read fast enough. It’s dramatic and emotional, and like I said earlier, I felt everything right along with them. I could relate to them both, I could understand where they were both at the whole way through the book and my heart was put through the wringer over and over again watching them fight their way forward.
“I need you. I need to love you. And I need to love you right.”
The romance is beautifully written. Their love is the kind of all-consuming, soul-mate, deep love that everybody wants. The kind that you know is going to last a lifetime. They are young, and as you would expect it takes time for them to come to the full realisation of what they want and all that they mean to each other, and there are external dramas which impact on them, but watching them on their journey was amazing.
I think, ultimately, that’s what true love is, you know? To want to be someone’s hero when they’re faced with villains. To want to be to be the one that saves them. To be their Wonderwall.”
And more than just Lucas and Laney, this is a family story, with lots of involvement from both of their families, both of which I loved. The family drama is written beautifully without becoming OTT, and more often than not with the Preston boys providing the comic relief, and allowing us to see more of Lucas and Laney as the caring, dependable, loyal people that they are.
There are some cameos from the More Than crew – Lucy and Cam in particular – and I loved seeing them again. If you haven’t read that series, it’s definitely one you need to add to your TBR!
Once again, Jay McLean absolutely captivated me with her story. I fell in love with Lucas and Laney, and though my heart broke over and over again, their story was beautiful and I could not put it down. Laughs, tears and everything in between, this book is one hell of a rollercoaster, and I loved every single moment of it!
I loved it! 5 stars.
An Advanced Reader copy was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
The Preston Brothers series
The More Than series
About the Author
Jay McLean is an international best-selling author and full-time reader, writer of New Adult Romance, and most of all, procrastinator. When she’s not doing any of those things, she can be found running after her two little boys, playing house and binge watching Netflix.
She writes what she loves to read, which are books that can make her laugh, make her hurt and make her feel.
Jay lives in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia, in a forever half-done home where music is loud and laughter is louder.
Check out our Jay McLean Author Spotlight for more details