This is Tess Callahan’s first novel but you would never know it. This is an author that knows how to get to the heart of her characters and develop them in a way that makes you feel as if you are taking part in their journey. I read this in one sitting finding it impossible to put down.
April loses her brother to a car accident and is shocked when her friend Oliver returns with his fiance. Oliver knew that it was the right thing to do – he needed to be there to help support April through this tragedy. What neither of them expected were the feelings that blossomed almost immediately upon seeing each other.
April fights the attraction she feels to Oliver – not only is he engaged but she has a history of making bad decisions when it comes to romance, partially due to an abusive past. She knows that she has made some mistakes and deserves to be happy but at what expense?
Oliver has his own problems with secrets of his own. He loves his fiancee but there is something about April that he can’t shake. He feels he needs her in order to be complete and shake some of the skeletons from his past. Will they be able to be together without causing grief to those around them?
This is one of the most heartfelt novels I have read in quite some time and I am hopeful the author will continue to keep April and Oliver in the back of her mind. Maybe she’ll bring them back in a new novel to let us in on what their future became.
A painter, teacher and mother of twins, Tess Callahan has written for Cottonwood, The Stylus Anthology: 1950-2000, The Boston College Magazine, New York Newsdayand elsewhere through syndication. When not exploring the complex motivations of intriguing characters (in her personal life and in her work), she finds nourishment and sustenance in periodic travels to wild, austere landscapes around the world. Tess has an MFA in Fiction from Bennington College. April & Oliver is her first novel.