Drive Me Sane

Dena Rogers
Drive Me Sane
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Publisher
Crimson Romance
Release Date
July 2014
ISBN
9781440584060
Genre
Contemporary Romance

SUMMARY
Unable to perform her duties in the army after a twelve-month deployment to Afghanistan that leaves her with scars no one can see, Sera Cavins returns to her hometown hoping that some time alone will help her find her way back to being the girl everyone once knew. That is, until she finds herself sharing a house with the man who left her heartbroken merely weeks before her deployment.

Tyler Creech made it to Nashville and even earned a number one hit, but being a rising country music artist isn't as easy as he thought. He's back in Cobb City, Kentucky, looking for something to ease the stress of his next release. He discovers it standing on his mom's and stepdad's lawn when Sera, the girl he once planned to marry, shows up.

They'd been perfect for each other, until the strain of Sera's deployment and pressure of Tyler's career drove them apart. Now with neither of their lives going the way they anticipated, both are fighting different yet similar demons.

But change is good, and sometimes going a little crazy is too. Sometimes it's what keeps you sane.

Book Review by Angie Just Read... (reviewer)
Jul 22, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
145 people found the following review helpful
They fell in love as teens but their fears and frustrations as young adults drove them apart. Years have passed and, now, both their lives are on a downward spiral. An unforeseen chance to reconnect is the second chance they both desperately need to exorcise old hurts, as well as conquer the troubles that are currently holding each of them hostage.

Discharged from the Army and suffering PTSD after a tour in Afghanistan, Sera Cavins makes a quiet return to her Uncle Roy's empty home in Kentucky to attempt to get her broken life back together. The remorse, regret, and guilt she feels has manifested into fears she's not ready to confess to anyone. Finding her former fiancé Tyler Creech at her uncle's home brings back even older hurts that make it doubly hard for Sera to hide the many secrets that steal her peace of mind and sap her wounded spirit.

Up and coming country music star Tyler Creech's life is being consumed by the demands of his career, and his life no longer seems his own. The mounting pressure is taking both a physical and mental toll on him, so a few weeks' hiatus at his mother and stepfather Roy's home in Kentucky is where he hopes to work through some of the issues that are leaving him sleepless and torn. He never expected to run into Sera Cavins, the woman who pushed him away and who still haunts him with unresolved heartache and regrets.

If they can bear to share the same roof, maybe they can finally uncover the reasons behind their broken engagement and broken lives, let go the pain and fear and, finally, heal and move forward together.

Debut author Dena Rogers makes a spectacular entrance to the field of romance with this nicely paced emotional tale that's sole focus is on mending broken hearts and broken lives. In my humble opinion, one can't help but applaud the author's tackling of the subject of PTSD in a former female soldier, and I thought her handling of the subject was relevant, vividly moving, and very well done.

With regards to Sera, I found her attempts to repress her emotions, as a means of self-protection, to be utterly convincing and understandable, even though I found I didn't always like her when she engaged these defense mechanisms. Ms. Rogers nicely countered Sera's actions with the often understated actions of Tyler, whom she characterized with the compassionate ability to understand and sense Sera's needs in the face of his own troubled emotions. This balance of give and take in characterization truly enhanced the gradual changes in this couple's relationship and kept the plot moving with new revelations and just enough valid recriminations to keep Tyler and Sera's relationship grounded and real.

Despite the novella length of DRIVE ME SANE, this tale has lots of depth, adequate back story, and there are few psychological or emotional issues that are left untouched. Crafting such a compelling story in approximately one hundred pages is a feat that deserves recognition and surely designates Dena Rogers as a talented new author to watch.
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Book Review by Robin Leigh Morgan (author,reviewer)
Nov 03, 2015
108 people found the following review helpful
HAS LOVE BEEN FOUND AGAIN ON THE REBOUND ?


While this story takes place in a small hometown atmosphere in Kentucky I can see it happening almost anywhere. In "Drive Me Sane" we are introduced to a young teenage couple, Sera Cavins and Tyler Creech, who are deeply in love with each together. In fact, they've even considered getting married to each other. But unfortunately, a strong, burning desire to become a country music singing star for one, and a stint in the military for the other for the other, acts like a huge saber bringing conflict and an unexpected changed to their relationship. They both go their separate ways with the love they'd once shared still part of their essence; with neither one expecting how fate would one day come along them together in a surprising set of circumstances.

The interesting about all this is the atypical role reversal we find here is that Tyler's the one who wants to be the country singing star and she's the one who's off for a deployment in Afghanistan.

When her deployment is over, Sera needs to have some time and find a safe haven where she can recover from the deep psychological scars of war she's suffered, scars which she'd never thought would have such profound effect on her psyche. The only place she can find this sanctuary is back in her uncle's house in the small town she once lived.

While Tyler has had one hit song, he hasn't made the impact he'd envisioned he would. This has caused him to become frustrated, and to lose his desire to do any more writing or singing. His only thought is to return home to the same small town as well, and due to an unexpected family development he winds up in the same house as Sera.

Being brought back together by fate, they begin working together to resolve the problems each are now dealing with, as well as those they once had.

Did their efforts prove successful in not only bringing their former selves back the way they'd once been, but improving on it? The answer to this can be found in this endearing, and at times, tear producing book. And for having my heartstrings plucked, I'm happy to give Dena Rogers' debut romance novel 5 STARS.
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