Monday, October 9, 2017

"All This Time" by Melissa Tagg

All This Time took me, well, all this time to read for one simple reason: I didn't want the Walker Family series to come to an end!

(Yes, that is a bad joke, but I don't apologize for it!)

Bear McKinley’s past refuses to let go. 

Ten years ago, Bear gave up everything—his freedom and his reputation—for his mess of a family. But after years of distance and too many attempts at starting over, he finally has a new life doing noble work in Brazil . . . until his past catches up to him once again. Suddenly he finds himself back in Maple Valley, charged with the care of his missing brother’s children, convinced he’s out of second chances to make his life count. And yet, with every day that passes, these kids, this quirky town and the woman he never stopped missing help patch the holes in his heart. Maybe this is the fresh start he’s been longing for all along. But as his newfound hope grows, so does the mystery surrounding his brother’s activities—and when the threat reaches into the lives of those he loves, it’s clear he can’t run away this time.

Fear holds Raegan’s future captive. 

Raegan Walker is fine. She’s happy working a slew of part-time jobs, still living in her childhood bedroom and rarely venturing from her hometown. At least, that’s what she tells everyone . . . and herself. But she can’t help wondering what might’ve happened if she hadn’t abandoned her art so many years ago—and if Bear McKinley had never left. When Bear returns and she’s commissioned for a painting that just might revive her artistic ambition all in one week, it’s time to finally reach for more than fine. But doing so means facing the fears that have held her back all this time, including admitting the secret she’s kept from Bear and her family. With her dream and her heart on the line, how much will Raegan have to risk to finally chase her happy ending?

Ah, Bear and Raegan. I've been waiting for their story for what seems like forever ... and now that I've finally read it, I can say that it was just as wonderful as I'd hoped!

When readers first met Bear and Raegan in Tagg's Walker Family prequel novella Three Little Words, they were "just" friends. Their friendlationship continued throughout the series. Raegan obviously wanted more, but they both knew it was just a matter of time before Bear would be leaving. I always thought that was a lame excuse for not being together—Bear could change his mind and stay, or Raegan could leave with him. But All This Time finally makes clear why that couldn't happen: Bear's past compelled him to leave, and Raegan's fears compelled her to stay.

Much of the novel focuses on Bear's and Raegan's individual journeys ... journeys that do end up overlapping. Bear desperately wants to leave his past behind—the past he hid from everyone in Maple Valley. But it keeps coming back to haunt him, and when he returns to Maple Valley, it's with his niece and nephew—part of that past—in tow. Raegan has kept things hidden, too—her fears, a panic disorder, and her true emotions—in large part because she never recovered from her mother's death. Bear and Raegan finally turn to each other as they work through their issues, and the resulting romance is just as sweet and swoon-worthy as I'd hoped it would be!

I absolutely loved this novel—it has romance, family drama, suspense, and a surprise ending that was so perfectly Bear & Raegan that I wondered why I didn't anticipate it. It's a great conclusion to the Walker Family series, and I'm sorry to leave Maple Valley behind! 5 stars.

Buy the book.
Read my reviews of the Walker Family books Three Little Words (5 stars), From the Start (5 stars), and Like Never Before (5 stars) and the "Walker-adjacent" novellas One Enchanted Christmas (5 stars) and One Enchanted Eve (5 stars).

Melissa Tagg is a former reporter, current nonprofit grant writer and total Iowa girl. She writes romantic comedies in the banter-filled style of her favorite 1930s and 40s classic films. The second book in her popular Walker Family series, Like Never Before, was named by Publishers Weekly to their spring 2016 "Religion and Spirituality" Top 10 list. When she's not writing she can be found hanging out with the coolest family ever, watching old movies, and daydreaming about her next book. Melissa loves connecting with readers at and on Facebook and Instagram.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book from the author. I was not required to write a positive review, and the opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


  1. This story does have something for everyone. A description you sum up beautifully here: [this story] has romance, family drama, suspense, and a surprise ending that was so perfectly Bear & Raegan...

    So true. I was surprised it had that touch of suspense, but of course, Melissa makes it work beautifully. Cannot wait to see what (series or story) she writes next - and that new Christmas novella of hers!! :)

    1. I was surprised about the suspense, too, but it does work so well. I'm SO excited about the new Christmas novella! And I still haven't read her novella in the Right Where We Belong collection, so I must get to that.

      Now I'm off to read your review--I wanted to write my own before I read yours :-)


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