Release Launch/Reviews: A View from Forever: Charlies Sheehan-Miles

A View From Forever (Thompson Sisters #2)
Charles Sheehan-Miles
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Expected April 20, 2015

Pre-orders are available now for $2.99. The price will increase to $3.99 one week after publication.

Dylan Paris is a working class kid from Atlanta. A former high school dropout who is trying to clean up his act, Dylan is stunned to be selected for a six-week foreign exchange program to Israel. 

Alex Thompson is the daughter of a wealthy US Ambassador. Several weeks overseas with an exchange program is just what she needs to get out from under her over-controlling parents. 

They only have five weeks before they go back to their homes. 
They have completely different lives.
The last thing either of them want or need is to fall in love.

We already know how this story ends and where Alex and Dylan end up. But in this prequel, Charles Sheehan-Miles uses his unique writing style and imagery to paint us the full picture of a young, intense love story that built over a  foreign exchange program.

Two teens from very different backgrounds: Alexandra Thompson, an intelligent, sweet, sheltered diplomat's daughter and Dylan Paris, a boy from Atlanta who has seen a rougher side of life. She has high expectations and future plans including college and important career. He barely managed to get into the exchange program after dropping out of high school for awhile. He does not think college is for him and wants to travel and experience life. Their lives couldn't be more different. And she lives in California while he is from Atlanta.

We follow these teens on their adventures in various locations in Israel. Not only is their budding relationship and attachment forming, but they are also learning about the political and cultural ramifications of what feels like a different world. But all the time as their feelings are growing,  so their anxiety about saying goodbye and what their future holds. Dylan has a hard time expressing himself and often feels unworthy. Alex is sensitive and fearful. But somehow they latch onto each other and form a bond.

It is a trip that changed Alex and Dylan's lives in ways they never imagined. They built an attachment that defied their diverse backgrounds. They came to truly understand each other. They brought out the best in each other and believed in each other.  But they are well aware that they will be  returning to their previous lives with their future looming. I kind of felt like the love story sometimes got bogged down in the politics and ethical considerations of the various locations, but I will admit that is not usually a big subject of interest to me so others might enjoy that. 

We know from Just Remember to Breathe that their lives take on twists and turns, but the connection that they developed during this trip will stick with them always. I will admit that after reading this, I went back and did a re-read of Just Remember to Breathe just to continue on with their story since it had been a while since I read it. It is interesting to see the difference between the teenage Alex and Dylan and the older versions of them.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. 

It was great to see where these two started out. While their initial meeting and the trip to Israel was referenced in Just Remember to Breathe, this is the entire trip, start to finish. From strangers meeting eyes in an airport terminal, to exploring the cities of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem together, this is the building of the love that will last them until they are both at Columbia years later.

Novellas are tricky for me in that they have to blow me away for me to love them. It is such a short timeline that I either expect things to roll really quickly, or I expect to not have a lot of detail. This fell somewhere in between. For a short story, there is a lot of detail about the scenery and people Alex and Dylan are traveling with. I felt like I was visiting Israel right along with them, even though I’ve never been. I could see the historic and the modern through their eyes.

Maybe it was because there was so much detail, it felt more like a short novel than a short story And because I already knew where Alex and Dylan would end up at the end of the trip, I didn’t feel the need to rush through the reading. As a result it made it hard at times to get through the details to the heart of the story.

The Alex and Dylan who narrate A View from Forever are not the same characters we know from Just Remember to Breathe. Alex is so unsure of what she wants to do beyond high school, whether to follow her parents wishes or create her own path as her older sisters have done. Dylan feels so out of place among the more typical high schoolers on the trip. Between his time living on the streets and his determination to not drink, he feels like he is from a completely different world. Even he doesn't know what he wants to do after graduation. The time in between the two story lines is filled with so much growth and change for these two and that I almost didn't recognize them here.

I did like the extra depth this story gave to Alex and Dylan’s overall story. I remember when I read Just Remember to Breathe that their trip would have made a great addition to their beginning, so I have a feeling if I were reading this closer to reading JRTB I would have liked the addition much more.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Thompson Sisters:
A Song for Julia(#1)Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/Kim's 5 star Review 
Falling Stars (#1.5):
  Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/Kim's 4.5 star review
Just Remember to Breathe(#3): Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/Kim's 4 star Review
The Last Hour(#4): Goodreads /Amazon/B&N/Kim's 5 star Review

Spin off Rachel's Peril series:

Girl of Lies (#1): Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/iBooks/Kobo/Our Reviews
Girl of Rage (#2)Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/iTunes/Kobo/Our Reviews
Girl of Vengeance (#3): Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/iTunes/Kobo/Our Reviews

Charles Sheehan-Miles

Charles Sheehan-Miles has been a soldier, computer programmer, short-order cook and non-profit executive, and is the author of more than a dozen fiction and non-fiction books, including the indie bestsellers Just Remember to Breathe and Republic: A Novel of America’s Future. He is a member of The Authors Guild and the Association of Independent Authors.

Charles and his partner Andrea Randall live and write together in South Hadley, Massachusetts.

I write about things I’m passionate about: love, romance, war; addiction, remorse, guilt. I write about the things that terrify me and give me joy. I write about life.



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