Title: In The Lyrics
Author: Nacole Stayton
Publication Date: Feb. 7th, 2014
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
Source: I received this book in exchange for an honest and thoughtful review
Hensley Bradley is the definition of the girl-next-door. She’s kindhearted, beautiful, and talented. Bored with her mundane life, thoughts of fleeing her small town begin to consume her. With aspiring dreams to use her voice as a one-way ticket, she suddenly discovers that music might not be her only passion.
After a fallout back home, Colby Grant decides to leave his family’s farm, determined to show his father he’s more than just a wanna-be country singer. With his All-American good looks, it doesn’t take long for girls in his new town to focus their eyes on him. But things aren’t what they appear from the outside, and it isn’t long until Colby feels he doesn’t fit into the perfect world that so quickly embraced him.
A chance encounter places Hensley in Colby’s path, but it isn’t her natural beauty that first captures his attention – it’s her voice.
When love and music mix, will the combination blossom into a beautiful melody or wither into a heart-wrenching tune?
In The Lyrics by Nacole Stayton is a sweet story that has a mix of two of my favorite things, music and romance! Nacole’s characters and their love story was an emotional one that made for quite the roller coaster of a read.
Although I enjoyed this story overall, my feelings on the main character, Hensley, are still a little iffy. She definitely grew on me throughout the second half of the book but there were definitely moments where she really just left me feeling so unsure. Sometimes she was sweet and then she would turn around and act horrible. There were also moments where she was understandable and then there were moments where she made rash decisions. I know people as a whole can be unpredictable especially when love is involved but Hensley’s unpredictableness made her hard for me to understand and connect to for most of the book.
Even though I didn’t connect with the main character in a way that I would have liked, I still appreciated her story. Learning about her family, her past, and her journey towards trying to make it as a country music star was interesting. What I perhaps like more than all of this though, was her relationship with Colby, the other main character.
I found myself liking Colby quite a bit more than Hensley although there were definitely moments he seemed almost too good to be true. Colby show up to town and falls for Hensley the moment he sees her. From then on, it’s all about him breaking down her walls to get to know the real her. I really enjoyed watching Hensley slowly learn to trust and open up to Colby and his determination to win her over was all the more reason for me to like him.
Colby and Hensley’s relationship endures quite a bit in this story. Colby’s past and his family problems get in the way, Hensley’s past and her family problems get in the way, and then there are moments where their jealousy and deception gets in the way as well. It was definitely quite a roller coaster of emotions but I think Nacole embraced all of the feelings of a first true love, the good and the bad. There was learning to open up to one another, learning to accept one another, and definitely a lot of learning to trust one another. I appreciated that both Colby and Hensley had to face this and they both grew as characters because of it.
I had a hard time connecting to the main character in this story but on the other hand, there were a lot of things I really enjoyed. I loved that music played a big part and watching the relationship between Colby and Hensley play out was one of my favorite parts. This story wasn’t my favorite but I definitely enjoyed In The Lyrics for the sweet, music inspired story that it was!
“Do you know the first thing that I noticed about you?”
She shakes her head no.
“It was your confidence. I had just gotten to town and was going to grab a bite to eat and then call Dusty, but I saw this girl sitting on the street corner.”
“I felt like you were staring holes in my head,” she says softly.
“Truthfully, I was. Anyway, once you started to sing…it was like…ya know when your favorite song comes on the radio and you’re jammin’, listening to every word, your heads bobbin’, and you’re just feeling the music, but then your phone rings and you know it’s a call you can’t miss? There’s a split second where you debate on pressing forward to voicemail so you can finish the song, but you’ve been waiting for this call, so you turn down the radio knowing you’ll miss your favorite part just to answer it. It was like you were my favorite song, and I was forwarding my calls to voicemail. In that moment, I didn’t care who was standing around me. All I was worried about was tuning in to you, listening to your voice.”
“I love you.” Those three simple words are spoken, and much to my amazement it’s Hensley that says them first.
Clutching her face hard in my hands, I kiss her. I kiss her for being so darn dumb and insecure, for acting like a jealous girl, and more importantly, for loving me through it all.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Nacole Stayton is twenty-something years young and currently resides in the Bluegrass State. She spends her days working at a local hospital in the billing department and nights writing vigorously on her current novel. She has a passion for helping others and wears her University of Kentucky gear proudly. While her husband loves all things outdoors, Nacole enjoys the finer things in life, like getting pedicures while reading on her Kindle Fire. She is passionate about her faith, family, and The Bachelor.