Once by L.T. Smith

Recovering From Abuse, Together

4.5 out of 5 stars

I will say that there is a lot of healing done in Once. The trauma train was on full display here. Now, I’m not saying that to discourage anyone from reading it. Quite the contrary. I think that Smith did a good job of showing a wide range of emotions and realistic responses to trauma in someone’s past. Especially someone’s dating history. The types of relationships that were shown here (emotional manipulation and abuse) are very traumatic, and the amount of building yourself up that has to be done to even get you back to “normal” again is shown in full force here.

I enjoyed the first-person style way of telling this one. I couldn’t tell at the beginning if I was going to like the little “meta” moments where the author was breaking the fourth wall and talking to me about why something was in the book or what they were going to name the chapter.

Once was one of those books that I had to know where it was going. I was okay wherever they ended up as long as they were in each other’s lives in some way, shape, or form. Of course, I’m thrilled with how it ended, but I would’ve been okay if they stayed… whatever they were.

I did want to call out that the opposite reactions to letting the ex know how they hurt them played out how I’ve personally witnessed. I’ve had both reactions, which are just as jarring to deal with. So, again, bravo to the author.

Overall, I thought that Once was a cute story about falling into like, and then love. A slow burn romance that took a while to heat up. And that’s just fine with me. I loved being taken along for the ride as they fell deeper without realizing it.

Oh, and Dudley was the cutest character. He added so much to so many scenes and truly stole the show in any scene they were in!

Book Description:

Once by L.T. Smith

Beth Chambers’s life is no fairytale, even if she feels like a damsel in distress.

After four years in a destructive relationship, Beth has decided enough is enough and leaves her girlfriend, taking with her only her dog Dudley, her broken spirit, and a shattered view of life.

At her lowest point, she meets Amy Fletcher, a woman who has it all—and from whom she believes would never want more than friendship.

But what Beth fails to realize is that there are definitely two sides to every story. Could Amy Fletcher be Beth’s Princess Charming? Could her story end with a happily ever after?

Contains mature themes.

Once by L.T. Smith
Narrator: Hannah Martin
Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
Published by Tantor Audio on October 11th 2022
Genres: Friends to Lovers, Slow Burn, LesFic/Sapphic Fiction
Format: Audiobook
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Also by this author: See Right Through Me

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