Cover Image: Fearless at Heart

Fearless at Heart

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I love romance and I love broken heart stories, second chances and the what ifs.  I enjoyed this story so much.  Definitely would recommend.
Was this review helpful?
4.5 Stars. Somehow this was my first book by Zoe York and I really enjoyed it. When Seth returns to his home town he is no longer able to avoid his high school sweetheart, January, as she is filling in for her sister and running the town’s dock where Seth parks his seaplane. Seth begins helping out around the dock and proximity leads to rekindling the sparks that once were.

I really liked both Seth and January. I liked that they were almost 40 and acted their ages. While a shower burn, this book was high heat and the tension between the two was there from the beginning. Along the lines of Seth and January acting their ages, I really liked that the children in the book also acted their ages. I am going to have to read all the other books in this series now because I am invested in the Kincaid family.

I really appreciated the abortion representation in this book. I liked that the abortion was a choice made by January that Seth fully supported and that he helped her through the process. I liked that when they told their close friends and family about it in the present, they were not faced with judgement, but acceptance and love. This is the kind of abortion rep we need in romances. I doubly appreciated that the author shared her own experience at the end of the book.

Thank you to NetGalley, the author, and Victoria Edition Co-op for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
A second chance story with 20 years in the making that has a slow-burn build-up for Seth and January.
It was sweet, steamy, and a realistic portrayal of life and the choices that we sometimes have to take.  
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book received from the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
This is a good book. The two main characters are January and Seth. They have known each other all their lives. They dated in high school, then January went to college and Seth went to the arm services. Then twenty years later they are both in their hometown. There is still an instant attraction. They have some issues to work out but together they do and fall in love.
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to Netgalley for a copy of this book for an honest review.

Love second chance romances and Seth and January were certainly that! 20 years after he left to join the military he returns. January is still in their home town and is friends with his brothers.  How will Seth's return impact January's life?
Was this review helpful?
I loved this book so much that while I somehow started at book #4, it pushed me into reading not only this series, but all of Zoe York's Pine Harbor series!

Seth and January were HS sweethearts with a complicated past who are going to be thrown together for the summer for the first time in forever, in their 40s. I as SO happy to get older MCs! I love seeing love interests my age, doing their every day lives, and falling in love. And Zoe York does that really, really well.

I'm a sucker for second chance relationships, and this book pulls that off without having any of the intense hatred that can sometimes come with those. They had obstacles to overcome, but nothing that was insurmountable. I loved the kids as well, which can also be hit or miss.

My favorite thing about this book is the abortion subplot - it's handled extremely well, matter of factly, and without any lingering traumatic issues. And I felt that it bookended the first book, Reckless at Heart, extremely with how well pregnancies were handled.

CW: past abortion
Was this review helpful?
Here we have a second-chance summer fling between two high school sweethearts that come together twenty years later. Off to an excellent, made-for-me kind of start. The yearning and angst towards the end were excellent, but overall, this book was a pleasant, quiet, small town romance. There were moments of heavy exposition and not enough forward momentum, unfortunately. However, these were compensated by how much the characters burn for each other. Oh, and I'm also a complete sucker for a passionate scene in a body of water (you'll know it when you read it).

The author handles the content that is in her content warnings with grace and care. Hats off to her!

One of the subtle skills that York employs is her ability to write believable preteen children that aren't horrendously annoying, which I seriously appreciated. 

Thanks to Victory Editing NetGalley Co-Op for the opportunity to read and review this book via NetGalley.
Was this review helpful?
A sweet start to the story  with some lovely characterisation but overall it didn't really grip me. Did not read to the end of this one unfortunately
Was this review helpful?
A solid contemporary romance read.

Seth and January were high school sweethearts who had an abortion together twenty years earlier before they went their separate ways. Now, they find themselves working together for a summer, and their feelings towards each other return full force.
Zoe York did a great job integrating an abortion that neither of them regrets without having it overshadow the entire romance. I loved the second chance aspect, as well as the older hero/ heroine. Seth and January are both very mature and set in their life path, which I enjoyed as a person in her late thirties.
Was this review helpful?
My first book by this author and it won't be my last, I will definitely be reading more of this series and seeking out her backlist. This is a fantastic, second-chance, lovers-to-friends-to-lovers romance, with very real, deeply drawn characters. I think second-chance romance can be tricky to pull off, especially if there's a long stretch of time between the initial romance and the current story; I often have a hard time believing that characters can connect after decades apart. What works really well here is that the main characters - January and Seth - get to know each other in the present and the new relationship is so much more than rekindling their prior relationship. They had an intense two years together as teenagers that ended due to some serious, adult choices they made as they finished high school, and it's now 20 years later when they cross paths in their hometown. Rather than rehashing and reveling in a lot of what-ifs, we see them get to know each other again, but with the undercurrent of attraction and knowing and seeing each other that would not be there without their past history. And while the relationship does not just pick up where they left off, there is a sense that these two people were destined for each other; their connection when seeing each other after decades apart is immediate. They do fight that attraction for a while, and the friendship that develops along the way is quite lovely. And when it ramps up beyond friendship, it is as intense as when they were younger, in fact more so. Of course they both tell themselves it's just for the summer because Seth's business is bringing him into town frequently but only for the summer months. The reader knows better and it's an absolute joy to watch these two fall in love.

As the story and relationship progress, we also learn about these characters as real people apart from the romance. I love reading a romance with characters who are whole, complete people and are pursuing the relationship for its own sake and not to somehow fill a missing part of their lives. January is happy in her career as a teacher and has a great relationship with her sister, August, and her niece and nephew, whom she is caring for while August is deployed overseas. She's also helping with August's marina business and has sort of a love-hate relationship with it, wanting the business to succeed but also annoyed at how it brings back memories of her late father, who was a not-so-great father, husband, and businessman. The marina and caring for her sister's kids has her stretched pretty thin, and Seth is really intuitive in how he helps her out but doesn't overstep. Seth is a bit of a stoic introvert and has quietly but doggedly built an air ferry business after serving in the Canadian Air Force. He lives in a different town than the rest of the Kincaid brothers, which appears to be in part due to trying to keep January out of his life after their breakup. He really loves his business even has it has pushed him outside of his comfort zone. These very realistically drawn characters made the romance all that much richer. And how they will merge their lives after following separate paths for so long is an important part of the romance.

I also absolutely loved the Lake Huron harbor town setting, the sibling relationships, and the summer vibe of the story. Seth's brothers are also featured in the story, and I'm interested to read their books in the prior and subsequent books in this series. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC!
Was this review helpful?
LOVED! Second chance romance with lots of sexual and emotional tension! Loved Seth’s character and how he wanted January, but was so respectful and attentive to her needs!   Highly recommend! Great read!
Was this review helpful?
When I think of romance, I think of books just like this one, that gives all the feels and satisfies every romance junkies' heart. This is a perfect book to snuggle up with on any day.
Was this review helpful?
An interesting story. I enjoyed this book from a first time for me author. I found the story engaging and I would recommend this author to others.
Was this review helpful?
Great small town second chance romance!  I love the Pine Harbour series - Zoe York writes realistic characters and situations and contemporary, relevant themes.   Love the Canadian setting and references - something that's rare and appreciated by this Canadian reader.
Was this review helpful?
Great small town second chance romance!  I love the Pine Harbour series - Zoe York writes realistic characters and situations and contemporary, relevant themes.   Love the Canadian setting and references - something that's rare and appreciated by this Canadian reader.
Was this review helpful?
Zoe York’s Fearless at Heart is the fourth book in her Kincaids of Pine Harbour series, a spinoff series from her Pine Harbour series. It's got one of my favourite tropes - a second chance romance for a couple that were together as teenagers - and coming on the heels of Wild at Heart which was a favourite last year, I had high expectations for this one. It definitely lived up to them, putting another book on my favourites shelf.

It's been twenty years since Seth Kincaid lived in Pine Harbour. His brothers are still there, and he's the only one who went away, first into the military and then setting up his floatplane business in Blind Harbour, close to home by plane, but also close enough to Blind Harbor not have to stay overnight after visiting with his brothers. And January Howe is still there, his secret high school sweetheart, his high school heartbreak. He's consciously tried to keep clear of her, so as not to open up old wounds. His ten year plan for his business and his life doesn't include a permanent relationship, or rekindling an old one. But this summer, things could get complicated.

January is happy that her sister August has a chance to go on a reserve army mission overseas, even if it means January will be taking care of her niece, nephew and Howe's Marina, an inheritance gift from their deceased father that August is trying to keep afloat. A teacher now, January usually isn't around at the marina any more than necessary, but now she's living there full time with the kids. And she knows that Seth has signed an agreement to run charter flights out of Pine Harbour three times a week, an agreement he made with August without knowing she'd be gone for the summer. So while January isn't surprised to see Seth show up early one morning, Seth is knocked for a loop. After being so careful to keep out of January's way for so long, not only will he be seeing her at the marina regularly, it also (small town and all) turns out that they'll be involved in the wedding planning for his brother Will and fiancee Catie, Catie being a friend of January's and Will being her boss (the principal) at the school.

From no contact to plenty of it, January and Seth struggle to balance their feelings about the past with the knowledge that they've grown into fully mature, responsible adults who still find themselves impossibly attracted to each other. Carrying on another secret relationship, just like in high school, but with the knowledge that as adults they can say goodbye at the end of the summer and go back to their previously planned futures seems easy, but will it end in heartbreak or happiness?

There's just something about this author's writing that grips me every time and no doubt if you check my Goodreads shelves or previous reviews here at AAR, you'll see that she's become a favourite. It seems so effortless to really like all the characters she creates, the families and the friends that intertwine into a community that you want to visit again and again. So being back in Pine Harbour is like visiting an old friend, with new and familiar faces making an appearance.

There are some tough memories and topics in this story. Deaths of parents and teenaged grief. And during their high school relationship, January got pregnant. Keeping it a secret from their families, Seth went with January when she got an abortion, fully present, supportive of her choice, giving her emotional and physical support, and knowing it was the right decision for them both. And then Seth, knowing his path would need to diverge from January’s as he entered the military to make something of himself, broke up with her and left, leaving her to pick up the pieces. All of these experiences have been carried with them and so it's natural that January is wary of opening her heart up to Seth again. I really appreciated that twenty years later, the author makes it clear that neither Seth or January has any regrets over the choice made to have an abortion. Of course, one can think 'what if' but both of them have put it in the past and it's just part of their history now.

As Seth and January start to share things with each other again, as friends, and then friends with benefits, it's no surprise that their high school feelings come back to the surface, but deeper and stronger. Of course, this scares them both but it opens their eyes to a new possibility, of merging their future plans into one for them both. With emotional and heart-tugging scenes, laughter, sexy lovemaking and strong family relationships, the happy ending for Seth and January finds the compromise they are looking for and leaves the reader fully satisfied. I can't wait to visit Pine Harbour again!

Buy it at: Amazon or your local independent retailer
Visit our Amazon Storefront
Was this review helpful?
I have read more than 20 books by Zoe York so I can say I like her writing and how she tells stories. 
Zoe York’s style is indeed in this #4 opus of the Kincaid of Pine Harbour’s series. Anyway I am kind of divided about the book. Some parts of the story are in too slow motion, but the romance and how it grows is OK.
Love scenes are hot. This is a second chance story and I am not a great fan of those but this one was nice enough.
Was this review helpful?
Zoe York is a reliably good writer, she knows how to build stories rooted in real issues with characters that re dimensional and still give a good escapist romance. The original separation in this second chance romance feels so honestly real that it stands out from the myriad book with the same trope.
Was this review helpful?
4 stars

Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for providing a free copy in exchange of an honest review. I think the blurb says it all. It’s a story between a couple who has a second chance in love after 20 years. Okay so I like the leads Seth and January. I think they’re pretty realistic characters and they definitely felt their age. I liked how the author wrote the story and didn’t make them get together quickly. This book is actually fourth in a series but I think it can be a standalone too. I haven’t read any of the other books and in fact this is my first book from the author. I think you’ll probably understand better if you’ve read the other books though it doesn’t impact the understanding of this book. I’ll probably check out the author’s other works.
Was this review helpful?
I loved Fearless at Heart! It follows Seth Kincaid and January Howe. Seth - who rarely visits his hometown, but has come back for the summer, and January, who stayed and became a teacher - and is now running her families marina. Seth left 20 years ago to join the military, leaving January and their past back in his hometown. Now as Seth revisits his town and offers to help our January by watching her niece and nephew, old feelings start coming back. Is this romance just going to last for the summer, or is there something more?

Things that drew me to this book: small town + second summer chance romance. THINGS THAT KEPT ME READING THIS BOOK: THE SMALL TOWN SECOND CHANCE SUMMER ROMANCE. This book was so emotional (and gave me so many feelings??) and if you love contemporary romance you need to read it.

Thank you NetGalley for the ARC!
Was this review helpful?