“A journey through life, loss & love.”
Young Astraea Salvo and Gabriel Varon discover a new friendship after separate tragedies change their lives. Together, they develop an affinity that quickly grows into an incredible bond despite the challenges of distance and the turbulence of adolescence. Unfortunately, nothing could prepare them for what was yet to come.
With war comes invisible wounds which are the toughest to heal. After combat in the Middle East, Gabriel must face his most difficult battle within himself.
With life comes love which is the hardest to keep. Astraea must overcome an intense loss and the growing distance between her and Gabriel as their lives pull them in different directions.
As adults, the two struggle to accept that their once unshakable friendship may never be the same again. But their genuine feelings continue to remind them that their bond will never completely be broken. In life, hearts don’t always win and the past isn’t always easy to escape. Will the unrelenting ties that bind them be able to defy the odds?
After all, anything worth fighting for never comes easy but will always be worth it in the end.
The Long Road to Serenity is a sweet, emotional first love/friends to lovers romance. Astraea met Gabriel when she was just 7-years-old. She and her mother have traveled to Texas to visit her mother’s good friend. It’s a much-needed trip as her father died months before. She and Gabriel become fast friends and inseparable that summer. Even when she and her mother return home, she stays in contact with him. Their summers together create a life-long bond that develops into something more, but life throws them some curveballs that could tear them apart.
I loved the way in which the story was told. It was not rushed, and it allowed their relationship to develop and grow. Because of that, I was drawn into their story. In addition, it allowed them to develop into their own selves and not just as a couple.
Speaking of characters, I liked both of them. Poor Astraea was given some major blows by life. Yet, she always managed to pick herself back up. No matter what she was going through, she just wanted to help Gabe.
Part of me was frustrated with Gabe for pushing her away after returning home from war, struggling with PTSD. However, another part of me understood his reasons. I gained a new respect for him when I realized he needed her. He was in his heart being unselfish. He didn’t want to hinder her life in any way. He knew he always loved her, he just finally had to accept that he deserved her and her love. They each brought a calmness and serenity to the other. Great romance!!!
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