Book Review – Goodbye Paradise (Hello Goodbye #1) by Sarina Bowen

Oh my gosh, I loved the story so much!! The FEELINGS gutted me.

Most people called it a cult. But for twenty years, Josh and Caleb called it home. 

In Paradise, there is no television. No fast food. Just long hours of farm work and prayer on a dusty Wyoming ranch, and nights in a crowded bunkhouse. The boys of the Compound are kept far from the sinners’ world. 

But Joshua doesn’t need temptation to sin. His whole life, he’s wanted his best friend, Caleb. By day they work side by side. Only when Josh closes his eyes at night can they be together the way he craves. 

It can never be. And his survival depends on keeping his terrible desires secret.

Caleb has always protected Josh against the worst of the bullying at the Compound. But he has secrets of his own, and a plan to get away — until it all backfires. 

Josh finds himself homeless in a world that doesn’t want him. Can Caleb find him in time? And will they find a place of safety, where he can admit to Josh how he really feels? 

Warning: Contains a hot male/male romance, copious instances of taking the Lord’s name in vain, and love against the kitchen counter. This book was previously released under the title: In Front of God & Everyone.

Expected publication: March 21st 2017 (first published February 18th 2015)

Interesting enough I read two M/M novels back to back. That usually does not happen but in this case I didn’t mind at all!!

I can’t say it often enough but Sarina Bowen is one of my favorite go-to authors for M/M. She has a certain way of evoking feelings in me that I would never have thought I would fell reading a male/male romance.

Goodbye Paradise was the best example.

I ADORED this book.

From the very first page I was hooked, engaged and invested. Josh and Caleb’s story was raw, different and made my heart ache.

For me what stood out the most was where Josh and Caleb came from. Josh would have been killed for his feelings if he would have acted on it. And Caleb would have been asked to marry a women and would have lived his life a lie.

That alone was incredibly heart breaking.

At the end (or maybe better at the beginning) Josh was cast out by the community members. Caleb had an inkling about what was coming and prepared him the best he could, but OMG I wasn’t sure if everything would work out. Right there, I was biting my nails and hoping for the best.

Caleb, knew that as soon as Josh was cast out, his time had come. He couldn’t stay one day without Josh being near, so he escaped.

Meeting up was only one hurdle they had to overcome. Stranded with NOTHING – no car, food, money, job opportunities – their situation was dire at best.

They finally made their way to Massachusetts to stay with another outcast, Maggie.

She took them in with wide open arms, a big heart, and a need for keeping her people close by.

It wasn’t easy for either Josh or Caleb to live outside their strict religious community. Not being able to participate in earning money was one of the things that bothered them the most, AND how to tell Maggie and her husband Daniel that they were a couple.

Honestly, there was nothing I didn’t adore about Josh and Caleb.

They were so in sync with each other. Working side by side for so many years, forged a relationship that was rooted in deep affection, love and attraction. It was palpable. Their love for each other jumped off the pages. Caleb took care of Josh, and in return Josh took care of everyone else.

Not only did I adore Caleb and Josh, I LOVED Maggie. She was incredible. I almost cried when she mentioned that the extra bedroom in their house was not for guests, it was for whoever came from their religious community in search for help. She would always have a bed available.

I believe I mentioned the word ADORED a couple times, but that’s what I felt about this book. It warmed my heart, and made me feel all gooey on the inside.

It was not sexy or steamy or hot – even so Caleb and Josh had some really hot scenes together – this books was not about that it was about so much MORE!!!

Goodbye Paradise had HEART!!!! 

ARC generously provided in exchange for an honest review.

8 thoughts on “Book Review – Goodbye Paradise (Hello Goodbye #1) by Sarina Bowen

  1. I’m reading it right now and I couldn’t agree more with your review. I’m loving Caleb and Joshua! They’re adorable together and the whole idea is so original and fresh it keeps me on my toes.

    1. Exactly!!! Those two were just too adorable. And their background was fascinating. Giving it 👍🏼👍🏼 – I love the authors M/M books, never thought I would be so moved and enthralled by it.😊

    2. Absolutely true!! Loved their interactions. They were so unique because of their background, fascinating and hear-warming at the same time. 😀

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: