Enjoying a romantic candlelit dinner with her fiancé, Ryan, at one of Seattle’s chicest restaurants, Kailey Crain can’t believe her good fortune: She has a great job as a journalist and is now engaged to a guy who is perfect in nearly every way. As she and Ryan leave the restaurant, Kailey spies a thin, bearded homeless man on the sidewalk. She approaches him to offer up her bag of leftovers, and is stunned when their eyes meet, then stricken to her very core: The man is the love of her life, Cade McAllister.

Flashing back to 1996, and then fast-forwarding to 2008, “Always” is a gripping and emotionally thrilling novel of first love, lost love, and the power of healing.

Set in a Seattle that vibrated with the music scene of the 1990s, Cade McAllister and Kailey Crain were in the heat of new love: they were full of dreams, plans, and the building of connections. They were soul mates.

But then something happened. Something inexplicable. During that summer of 1998, Cade disappeared. For ten years, Kailey would wonder, would grieve, and then finally move on with Ryan Winston.

What did Kailey discover during the winter of 2008, after finding Cade on that sidewalk? How does she finally uncover the events of that final summer together in 1998? Who was responsible for Cade’s injuries? Will she be able to put the pieces together in such a way that Cade can be restored to her and to his life?

I could not stop reading this story, feeling the strength of that first love, despite the obstacles and the loss, and rooting for Kailey and Cade…while still feeling a bit sad for Ryan. Yes, I could predict a lot of what would ultimately happen, but that did not make it a “predictable” read for me, as there were numerous questions along the way. Mysteries to solve. So this book was another winning tale by this author. 5 stars.

My e-ARC came to me from the publisher via NetGalley.

24 thoughts on “REVIEW: ALWAYS, BY SARAH JIO

  1. I read the first 3 books this author wrote and then have not read any since that time. I really liked the ones I read in the past. This one sounds sad, but one that would be good if I were in the mood. Will keep it in mind.

    Liked by 1 person


    1. Thanks, Deanna, I really love books set in Seattle…and have visited that city at least half a dozen times…loving it always! (See what I did there?).

      Suspense thrillers, both books and movies, set there are always better because of the scenery, the rain, the islands…

      Enjoy living there!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I read Goodnight June by Jio a year or two ago and absolutely loved it. The ending there was predictable as well but that didn’t keep it from being wonderful! It sounds like that’s very much the case here as well and this sounds like a book I’d really enjoy. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person


    1. I have loved all of her books, but it’s hard to pick a favorite. If you love a bit of mystery, there are some of her books that have a lot more twists and turns than this one did. To sample a more mysterious offering, you might try Morning Glory (about a houseboat community and some mysteries in an old chest). Or Violets of March, when the MC visit her aunt on Bainbridge Island, to recover from a marriage breaking up. The MC finds an old diary that is full of mysteries.

      Good luck! Thanks for stopping by, Susan.


  5. This sounds good too. I really enjoyed my visit to Seattle – great place to visit. I will take a peek at your books this week to maybe add to my TBR. The Morning Glory you mentioned in a reply sounds intriguing.

    Liked by 1 person

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