The Words Between Us

The Words Between Us by Erin Bartels

Book Synopsis

Robin Windsor has spent most of her life under an assumed name, running from her family’s ignominious past. She thought she’d finally found sanctuary in her rather unremarkable used bookstore just up the street from the marina in River City, Michigan. But the store is struggling and the past is hot on her heels. When she receives an eerily familiar book in the mail on the morning of her father’s scheduled execution, Robin is thrown back to the long-lost summer she met Peter Flynt, the perfect boy who ruined everything. That book–a first edition Catcher in the Rye–is soon followed by the other books she shared with Peter nearly twenty years ago, with one arriving in the mail each day. But why would Peter be making contact after all these years? And why does she have a sinking feeling that she’s about to be exposed all over again? With evocative prose that recalls the classic novels we love, Erin Bartels pens a story that shows that words–the ones we say, the ones we read, and the ones we write–have more power than we imagine.

In Review

What begins as a high school friendship involving a quarterback and a bookworm, soon becomes so much more. I adored this story and all of its mentions of classic works. It’s a slow burn that really makes you dig deep. With emotional scenes and troubled characters, it weaves a beautiful story of friendship, love, forgiveness and family. The split timeline going back and forth between “then” and “now” was easy to follow and really played into the depth of the plot. I simply had to keep reading and couldn’t put it down. The Professor, the main characters inherited parrot, was the perfect addition for a bit of humor all the while keeping it realistic.

While the book is labeled as Christian fiction and faith is mentioned, it is only sprinkled in. It leaves you thinking more than anything. The author touches on some very tough situations and I think her approach to faith is very realistic rather than fairytale. I appreciated that in this specific story, as it made it more believable as to how a young girl being alone would find her way.

All in all, The Words Between Us, is a new favorite. I look forward to more works from Erin Bartels.


I received a copy of this book for review via . In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

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