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The Other Side of Disappearing

Kate Clayborn delivers another touching romance!

When Jess became Tegan's guardian, she was twenty-one and her half-sister Tegan eight. Now, Tegan has figured out that the man their mother ran away with ten years ago was the con artist subject of a popular true-crime podcast, a secret Jess had been keeping. Tegan wants to follow the story by going on a road trip with podcast host Salem and producer Adam. Jess is worried about Tegan's safety and reluctantly agrees to join them. 

Told in the dual POV of Jess and Adam, this book is a heart-melting love story, but it's more than a romance. It's a beautifully written and layered story about self-discovery, complex family dynamics, emotional wounds, and opening up and moving from self-protection to embracing life to the fullest.

The character development in this is superb—nuanced, flawed, relatable characters. I felt Jess's emotions and struggles, and I empathized with her deeply. I understood how Jess had become so guarded and "disappeared" while shouldering the enormous responsibility of raising her sister from a young age. I wholeheartedly rooted for her. Former football player Adam has become a journalist to one day tell a very personal story. He, too, has wounds and shows himself to be patient, vulnerable, and protective. He "sees" Jess as he, too, understands what it is like to "disappear." 

Clayborn is so good at crafting deeply emotional narratives. The complex relationship between Jess and Tegan is poignant. The heart-breaking circumstances that transformed their sibling bond into a parent-child relationship and the subsequent evolution of their characters brought me to tears. The plotting is strong, with a mystery and the podcast aspect in the mix. The pacing is perfect, and the story is engaging and adorned with lovely metaphors. It's a unique read, and I loved it. Don't miss this!

Pub Day is March 26, 2024

Thank you to Kensington Books for the free book! 

My steep was Harmonize from Club Magic Hour—a white tea with roses, bergamot, and tangerine. 


Hairstylist Jess Greene has spent the last decade raising her younger half-sister, Tegan—and keeping a shocking secret. Ever since their reckless mother ran off with a boyfriend she’d known only a few months, Jess has been aware that he’s the same accomplished con man who was the subject of a wildly popular podcast, The Last Con of Lynton Baltimore.

Now thirty-one, Jess didn’t bargain on Tegan eventually piecing together the connection for herself. But Tegan plans to do exactly what Jess has always feared—leave their safe, stable home to search for their mother—and she’ll be accompanied by the prying podcast host and her watchful, handsome producer, Adam Hawkins. Unwilling to let the sister she’s spent so much of her life protecting go it alone, Jess reluctantly joins them.

Together, the four make their way across the country, unraveling the mystery of where the couple disappeared to and why. But soon Jess is discovering other things too. Like a renewed sense of vulnerability and curiosity, and a willingness to expand beyond the walls she’s so carefully built. And in Adam, she finds an unexpected connection she didn’t even know was missing, if only she can let go and let him in.

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