To Be With You by T.J. O’Shea Is a beautiful, angst-ridden tale of what could be a modern version of a Julia and Juliet, star-crossed lovers romance. At least that’s what it looks like on the surface.
Leah Vasquez and Victoria Lockwood should never fall in love. They are too different. Leah is from a Hispanic American family that lives on the poor side of town. She is a bright student, but a loner who works two part-time jobs to save for university and her ticket out of town. Victoria lives in a mansion with an extremely domineering mother and a somewhat absent father. She runs with the “right” crowd at school and has her future completely planned out for her. These two should definitely not fall in love, but they do, with a passion that is glorious even as they try to keep it secret. They have one summer before everything crashes and burns. Now five years later Victoria is coming back to town with her fiancé to visit her family, and the first person she meets is the one she least expected to see…Leah. The meeting is unsettling in many ways, not the least of which is the sudden rush of feelings that both women thought were dead.
It took me a couple of chapters to really get into this book, but suddenly, the story grabbed my heart, wrung it out like a dishrag a few times, and refused to return it until way after I finished reading. These characters are so real you can’t help falling for them even with their quirks and shortcomings. The author showed the two ladies’ depth of feelings for each other amazingly well, both the teenage “first love” as well as the more mature emotions later. The secondary characters as well as the setting, enhanced the storyline and created the perfect background for this narrative.
I’m in love with this novel, and if you enjoy angsty romantic tales, you’re going to fall for it too. I received an ARC from NetGalley and Bella Books for an honest review.