Can't Help Falling - Kara Isaac

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

My Rating
★★★★★ - You have bewitched me, body and soul. (More Info)

About the Book
A funny, heartfelt romance about how an antique shop, a wardrobe, and a mysterious tea cup bring two C.S. Lewis fans together in a snowy and picturesque Oxford, England.

Emelia Mason has spent her career finding the dirt on the rich and famous. But deep down past this fearless tabloid-reporter fa├žade, there’s a nerdy Narnia-obsessed girl who still can’t resist climbing into wardrobes to check for the magical land on the other side. When a story she writes produces tragic results, she flees to Oxford, England—home to C.S. Lewis—to try and make amends for the damage she has caused.

Peter Carlisle was on his way to become one of Great Britain’s best rowers—until he injured his shoulder and lost his chance at glory. He’s determined to fight his way back to the top even if it means risking permanent disability to do so. It’s the only way he can find his way past failing the one person who never stopped believing in his Olympic dream.

When Peter and Emelia cross paths on her first night in Oxford, the attraction is instant and they find common ground in their shared love of Narnia. But can the lessons from a fantasyland be enough to hold them together when secrets of the real world threaten to tear them apart? Cobblestone streets, an aristocratic estate, and an antique shop with a curious wardrobe bring the world of Narnia to life in this inspiring and romantic story about second chances. (Author's Website)

My Thoughts
There are a few books that I have read this year that are beyond outstanding. Can't Help Falling is one such book. I can not emphasize enough how unique and brilliant Kara Isaac's books are. I was thrilled to see some of my favorite (and not so favorite) characters from Close to You make a reappearance. I adore the people in Kara's books! So much so, that I am utterly convinced they are real. Don't bother trying to change my mind because it won't work. I also really want a Narnia themed party for Christmas now.

"The accent got her every time." 

I like to think that Peter sounds a little bit like Benedict Cumberbatch (Listen to Benedict read Jabberwocky HERE)...that voice! Peter is such a big teddy bear, but I would want him on my side in a fight. Despite his doubts, he is such a wonderful man. Someone who is fiercely loyal, a true man of faith, and kind. He is human though and has his shortcomings, just like the rest of us. I adore Emelia, between her personality, meticulous party planning abilities, and Narnia obsession I just want to track her down and be her best friend. The web of connections and past events kept me on my toes and guessing up until the final chapters. This book is also the cause of a few very late nights reading. I was so completely immersed into the story. Even now I find myself grinning at the beautiful flow of the story and romance. 

The Eagle and Child (The Bird and Baby) , Oxford.  The pub where J.R.R. Tolkein and C.S. Lewis swapped ideas on their writings.:
The Eagle and Child
Where Tolkien and C.S.
Lewis would meet.
Picture from Pinterest.
Don't let the cute antics and adorable features of our characters fool you, they still have quite the journey of healing, forgiveness, and second chances. Emelia and Peter are both dragging around loads of guilt and fear of the past. While they continue to struggle for atonement. However, no matter how hard they strive, they cannot find freedom on their own. Despite their best efforts, Emelia and Peter can not find peace. She can not forgive herself, she can not let go of her past mistakes, and neither can he. Instead, Emelia works to make up for what she has done, hides in wardrobes looking for Narnia and tries to shield her heart from the Heavenly Father whom she cannot see as loving. Will she be able to finally find peace? Or will she continue to run? Something that really stood out to me in this book was the message of second chances. Not only for others, but for ourselves. When we do not see ourselves as God sees us, when we see ourselves as broken and soiled, we don't think we deserve a second chance. But He can make us whole and pure. Forgiven and radiant. Will we allow ourselves the freedom of forgiveness and a second chance? And will you choose to be a Susan...or a Lucy?

Picking my top favorite books for the year will be challenging, but both of Kara's books are definitely among my absolute favorites! While these books can stand alone, I recommend reading Close to You first (link below). Otherwise, there will be some confusion with the secondary storyline. Kara has graciously provided a copy of Can't Help Falling for a giveaway here on Bookworm Mama (scroll down to enter)! Kara is also hosting a giveaway on her webpage. If you pre-order Can't Help Falling, you can enter to win a fun prize pack! More details HERE. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a wardrobe to find.

The Eagle and Child Pub, Oxford. I sat at that table with the menu on it!!:
Inside The Eagle and Child
Picture from Pinterest.
I received a free copy of Can't Help Falling through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Purchase Options 

About the Author
Me and Kara!
Kara Isaac is an award-winning writer who lives in Wellington, New Zealand, where her career highlights include working in tourism as Private Secretary for the Prime Minister. She loves great books almost as much as she loves her husband and two Hobbit-sized children.

Also by Kara Isaac

Read my review HERE.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Terms & Conditions of Giveaway:
Open to US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand for PRINT copy. If the winner resides outside of the above mentioned countries, the winner will be awarded an eBook through Amazon. Giveaway begins 9/28/16 12:00AM Pacific Time and ends 10/5/16 12:00AM Pacific Time. Winner will be contacted within 24 hours of giveaway ending. Winner will be contacted via email address provided. Winner will have 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiting prize. If the winner does not respond within 48 hours of being contacted, I will choose a different winner.
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