Lead Me Back
It’s been a long, long time since I have read a contemporary romance, and I’ve never read one quite like this. Keeping that in mind, let’s dive right in.
In Lead Me Back, Kayla Montgomery flees New York City and moves to Los Angeles amid a major scandal in her career. She and her sister inherit her grandfather’s historic movie theater, and Kayla moves into the apartment above it. She begins looking for a job, but because of the scandal she left behind in NYC, she is having trouble finding work as a fashion designer. Kayla gets a new phone number so her ex can no longer contact her, and has no idea that her new number used to belong to Justin Beckett, former boy band member and current Hollywood bad boy. Justin comes into Kayla’s life after his grandmother accidentally calls her and talks Kayla into bringing roses to her home.
When Kayla arrives at Justin’s grandmother’s and he finds out Kayla has his old number, he hires her to take messages for him. This leads to his helping her get a job on the set of the movie he’s starring in. Justin is trying to overcome demons of his own as he navigates moving into movies and starting a solo career. It is these same demons that make him cautious about falling for Kayla despite their mutual attraction.
Lead Me Back kept me reading, sometimes even when I wasn’t sure why. I love a good mystery in a book, and I couldn’t wait to find out the big secrets that comprised Justin and Kayla’s backstories. I wasn’t disappointed when I found those out, either; their problems were very believable and relevant to our times.
As for the characters themselves, I thought Justin was a jerk at the beginning, but he does more growing throughout the story than Kayla does. That, combined with the lengths he goes to to help a friend struggling with addiction made me like him so much more by the end than I did at the start. I liked Kayla too, but I liked her immediately and did not have to come to like her as I did with Justin.
The only thing that kept this title from getting a higher grade was the cringe-worthy dialogue and the incredibly immature thoughts that both characters have from time to time. At one point, Kayla thinks about saying something to another character that was a popular comeback for kids in the nineties. Had it just been a time or two I could have dealt with it, but the bad dialogue was in evidence throughout.
Bad dialogue aside, Lead me Back was an enjoyable read about two troubled people coming together and healing the pain from their pasts.