Early Book Review: I'll Stand By You by Sharon Sala

I'll Stand By You by Sharon Sala is a contemporary, small town romance that is currently scheduled for release on June 2 2015. Dori Grant is no stranger to hardship. As a young single mother in the gossip-fueled town of Blessings, Georgia, she's weathered the storm of small-town disapproval most of her life. But when Dori loses everything within the span of an evening, she realizes she has no choice but to turn to her neighbors.  Everyone says the Pine boys are no good, but Johnny Pine has been proving the gossips wrong ever since his mother died and he took over raising his brothers. His heart goes out to the young mother and child abandoned by the good people of Blessings. Maybe together two people that have struggled so long can find a happily ever after.

I'll Stand By You was very well written, but a very emotionally hard read. Dori and Johnny had each been through so much trauma in the past, and things become increasingly hard for them through out this story. Johnny and his brothers deal with things they should not have to just because of their father's reputation. Dori has been struggling, but at least had the support of her grandfather, until he dies after a fire that takes her home and most everything else away from her as well. When most of the world seems against them they find support and help with each other. When that only seems to cause more trouble they are bound together even tighter. I loved the balance of judgmental and loving people in the town, so true with most groups of people. Although, I did have a hard time reading about some of the troubles the pair faced. While realistic, the hypocrisy of the 'good' people in town had me steaming mad- which  just goes to show how much Sala had me caring about her characters. The story is about doing the right thing, having hope, and standing up for yourself and others despite the hardships you might face. 

I'll Stand By You is a great read, but not an easy one. You will fall in love with and feel for the characters. You will want to scream and cry along with or for them, and you will be uplifted with the end, and then teased to seek out more from the author to see one of the most caring side characters have her own story. Not a book to escape with, but one that will stick with you long after you try to move on to the next read.

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