A Second Chance At Love
Title: When I See Your Face
Subtitle: A Second Chance At Love
Author: Devika Fernando
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Year of Publication: 2014
Rating: 4/5 stars
I wrote in an older review that I’m pretty shy when it comes to contemporary literature, because I’m not very accustomed to its genres, styles and new trends; plus, I don’t always know what I’m getting into. However, after recently discovering a few Romanian and foreign book tubers and after creating my Goodreads and Twitter accounts, my interest and appetite for contemporary books began to grow. It’s more like a combination of curiosity and the need to know what’s new and good to read.
For today’s review, I’m going to talk about a romance novel entitled When I See Your Face: A Second Chance At Love written by Sri Lankan-born German author Devika Fernando, who sent me a link to the free Kindle Edition of her book, that also contains an unexpected bonus. She has also published other contemporary and paranormal romance books and series, which are very tempting for any book lover of these genres.
When I See Your Face: A Second Chance At Love follows the story of Cathy Nolan, the wife of real estate manager Mark Nolan. She runs away from home, in order to escape the beatings and suffering caused by her abusive husband. She flees to a quiet village, where she plans to begin a new life. However, Cathy panics and has a nervous breakdown when she encounters Michael Newland, a man who looks exactly like her husband. Talking about freaky coincidences, huh? The other man’s face brings back to life Cathy’s traumatic memories and fears regarding her husband through vivid nightmares.
Though Michael and Cathy’s first encounter is far from polite, because of her improper behaviour towards him, the man introduces her to his passion for gardening, his artworks, because he also enjoys painting, and he overall makes Cathy feel useful happy and free. Compare this to the times when she was forced by her husband to behave in a certain manner, to always dress elegantly, wear make-up and talk very little as if she were his puppet. Michael, on the other hand, will help Cathy figure out a way to fulfil her dream of opening her own business, baking and decorating cakes, and he will be her biggest supporter. Cathy feels attracted to Michael, but she doesn’t know if it’s okay to fall in love with someone whose face she feared so much in the past. Though Mark and Michael are almost identical, Cathy realises that the latter is less self-centred than the former, he is truly caring, honest, funny and he’s very attentive towards her — these are qualities that Cathy never found in Mark.
Though it’s a bit odd for someone to fall in love with a man physically identical with one’s abusive and controlling husband, I presume that Cathy’s attraction to Michael can be interpreted as her longing for a better version of Mark. Even if Michel boosts her confidence, Cathy is reluctant to tell him about her past. Giving into his love for her it will not be easy, because of her shadowy memories regarding her husband and the fear of making the same mistakes again. However, Michael wants Cathy to leave the past and her fears behind and start afresh because he also went through a bitter life experience before moving to this small village and before working as a gardener. What secret will be revealed?
In short, the story is light – more like a summer read – fast paced and a cocktail of emotions ranging from fear, pain, and vulnerability… to love. The characters are relatable because each of them has both a good and a bad side. It’s a story about love, pain and happiness… about the strength to leave the past behind and chase your dreams. Enjoy!