Dirt poor. Hillbilly. Backwoods hick. Mountain folk.
Tenleigh Falyn struggles each day to survive in a small, poverty-stricken, coal mining town where she lives with her sister and mentally ill mother. Her dream of winning the college scholarship given to one student by the local coal company and escaping the harshness of her life, keeps her going.
Kyland Barrett lives in the hills, too, and has worked tirelessly—through near starvation, through deep loneliness, against all odds—to win the Tyton Coal Scholarship and leave the town that is full of so much pain.
They’re both determined not to form any attachments, but one moment changes everything. What happens when only one person gets to win? When only one person gets to leave? And what happens to the one left behind?
Kyland is a story of desperation and hope, loss and sacrifice, pain and forgiveness, but ultimately, a story of deep and unending love.
A thought came to mind while reading Kyland. It was that Love is such a pure motivator. I mean it has the power to change us, heal us, make us better people. And within its expanse are different forms of love. 'Agape'- The complete and unconditional love that sees beyond ones appearance and looks at the heart of the other person. It is sacrificial and does not require anything in return. There is 'Phileo' – affectionate, warm, platonic love shared between friends. And then of course, last but not least there is 'Eros' – a passionate, intense, romantic love.
Mia Sheridan has exemplified them all in Kyland. In various relationships throughout this book we see and feel them in action, but the love between Kyland and Tenleigh is the embodiment of all 3, and their love, well… it’s just joyous to behold.
“You drive me crazy”. He murmured. He brushed his lips across mine lightly and I shivered.
“And you make the darkness go away. You bring me some kind of peace.” He let out a harsh exhale of breath and I drank it in. “I don’t know what to do with it.”
“Take it, Ky,” I whispered. “You deserve some peace. Let me give it to you.”
“And what do I give to you, sweet Tenleigh?” he whispered, sounding broken. “What can I possibly give to you?”
I thought about it for a second. “You help me believe.”
“In goodness, in strength. In the fact that there are good men out there who are honourable.”
Mia really does seem to have a magic formula when it comes to weaving a tale. She dreams up characters so compelling that they burrow themselves into the innermost chambers of our hearts. Kyland Barret and Tenleigh Falyn are no exception. I was so torn up over these two. The impoverished life they were born into, and the struggles they endured just to survive- gut wrenching!. Yet their lot had not broken them, and they taught me that there is indeed dignity in suffering .
“The reason I gave that sandwich to Joan Lytle…” He looked off into the distance as if he was choosing his words carefully. “Even for people like us – there’s always someone who’s hungrier. And hunger, well, it comes in different forms”. He lowered his head “I try not to forget that.”
I fought back tears for the entirety of this book for and so many reasons. Not just the circumstances surrounding Kyland & Tenleigh’s lives, but for their loss, for their love, so heavily impacted by the confines of poverty, and the sacrifices they made for each other.
The destitution and poverty portrayed reminded me how fortunate I am for the things I have. But more than anything I admired their ability to continue to meet the challenges of life with decorum and grace.
"The things you did to survive were the most personal of all- the fight to live would humble you in ways you didn't ever want anyone else to know about. Because sometimes it was unspeakable. Sometimes it was ugly and shameful and beautiful and courageous all at once."
I also LOVE that Mia once again has given a shout out to hot men with impeccable dental hygiene by gifting us with the adorable, sexy but nerdy dentist 'Sam'.
"You Know tooth decay in Appalachia is a real epidemic" He glanced back and forth between Marlo and me. "Of Course, your teeth are beautiful. You must take good care of them. Oral Health is so... You Must floss well which is great"- Adorable!
I laughed at the light hearted humour and loved the nod to Jane Austen...
“You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone forever…I have loved none but you,” I whispered against her skin, quoting the words I knew she’d remember….
Mia has truly captured the essence of true, pure, innocent, first and second chance love in a way that evoked my own personal memories (hence the constant lump in my throat). She has a real knack for forging strong connections between character and reader,which is why we fall so deeply in love with her books. We hand over our hearts to Mia when we read her books and she ALWAYS takes such care with them and returns them to us en-kindled and renewed. Its another Keeper by Mia Sheridan.
6 Golden, beatific Stars....
Buy ON AMAZON
Kyland is a standalone book within the Signs of Love series
Other books by Mia Sheridan
I’m an avid reader, and now writer! of romance and erotic novels. I live in Cincinnati, Ohio with my husband who is a police officer and my biggest fan (not necessarily in that order). We have four children here on earth and one in heaven. When I’m not sitting on my couch with my head buried in my Kindle, I can be found writing or doing anything creative from building a patio, to sewing pillows. The wild hairs I get know no bounds. Leo is my debut novel, but my head is swimming with more…