by Sarina Bowen


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There's a first time for everything.

Lark Wainright used to be fearless. Her life was a series of adventures, each one more exhilarating than the last. But her recent overseas adventure was one too many. Now she's home and in one piece. Mostly. But her nights are filled with terror.

When her best friend offers her a stay at the orchard in exchange for help at the farmers' markets, Lark jumps at the chance to spend fall in Vermont. But her nightmares don't stop. Desperate to keep her fragile state a secret, she relies on the most soft-spoken resident of the Shipley Farm to soothe her when her dreams prove too much.

Zachariah is a survivor, too. It's been four years since he was tossed aside by the polygamist cult where he grew up. He's found a peaceful existence on the Shipley's farm, picking apples and fixing machinery. But getting thrown away by your own people at nineteen leaves a mark on a guy. He doesn't always know what to make of a world where movie quotes are the primary means of communication. Before hitchhiking to Vermont, he'd never watched TV or spoken on the phone.

Actually, there are a lot of things he's never done.

Zach and Lark slowly grow to trust one another. One night they become even closer than they'd planned. But Lark may still be too broken to trust anyone. When she pushes Zach away, he will have to prove to himself that he's good for much more than farm labor.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781942444206
Publisher: Rennie Road Books
Publication date: 10/21/2016
Series: Sarina Bowen's True North Series , #3
Pages: 312
Sales rank: 344,792
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.65(d)

About the Author

Sarina Bowen writes steamy, angsty contemporary romance, including the Ivy Years, Gravity, and Brooklyn Bruisers series, as well as two series of new-adult fiction.

Read by Erin Spencer, Kyla Garcia, Caitlin Davies, Amy Landon, and Soneela Nankani

Teddy Hamilton is a voice talent and audiobook narrator.

Customer Reviews

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Keepsake 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
mostlyyalit More than 1 year ago
Wow. I didn't think there was a way to top the last two installments of Sarina Bowen's True North series, but I was wrong. Sarina has gifted us with an amazing, gentlemanly hero who is loyal, generous and stalwart, but also still dealing with the aftermath of a loveless, cruel childhood where he was isolated from the rest of the world. Zachariah Holtz is rock-solid, in both body (yum!) and mind, and yet, he's real. He's had a powerful attraction to Lark Wainright, one of his employers' best friends, since he first met her. Lark is a vivacious, adventurous woman just coming back from a work trip in a dangerous part of Guatemala, where she was kidnapped and held hostage for several weeks. Yeah, it's not pretty. Lark is dealing with severe PTSD, including terrifying nightmares. Her best friend, May Shipley, invites her up to the family farm for the apple harvesting season, in the hopes that Lark will be able to deal with her issues more there. I won't give away much more than this, because the way that Zack and Lark get together is just as complex as their characters. Lark is such a beautiful contrast of strong and broken, sassy but scared. There's a reason that Griffin Shipley nicknames her "Wild Child", but there's also a lot of a different person in there after what happened in Guatemala. Bowen paints her and her trauma so realistically. It's just such an honest and thoughtful portrayal of two people dealing with their demons and how all kinds of love can heal - but sometimes it's not the only thing that's needed. Bowen has said that this book took her a long time to write and perfect, and it was the first book written in the True North series - but one that was stewing in her head for three years. I think the time and rumination did it so much good, because it's definitely the most deftly written book in her oeuvre, and the most carefully plotted. You feel the care Bowen takes with the characters, to do right by them and ensure we get the best possible story. Aside from the romance and characters, Keepsake offers more looks at gorgeous Vermont, the Shipleys and Jude and Sophie from the first and second book, and just a feeling of the wonders of harvest season. Like the first two books, Keepsake made me desperately want to go apple-picking, eat a cider donut, and go to the farmers' market. It's definitely a book for foodies and nature lovers, but more, it's a book for anyone who loves realistic and flawed characters and seriously steamy love scenes. Just go read it. Now. =p
Anonymous 9 months ago
Lots of realism in this story and steamy relationships!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another excellent book in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Highly recommended. Love it.....!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my favourite book from this series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So great! I love that it included what everyone else was doing too. Adding in Griffin and Audrey and Zara and all the other characters was like returning home! Love love love
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a wonderful story. The characters are believable and unforgettable. Lark and Zachariah in real life probably would not hook up. This story made it impossible for them to not be together. Just loved it!
lenorewastaken More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars — Welp, I do believe this is my favourite series by Sarina Bowen…which is saying something, b/c she has a lot of amazing books. But every book in this series offered up something different, but was consistent in giving me characters I loved, humour, feels, and the desire to visit Vermont. Zachariah was the whole reason I was looking forward to this book. From the first moment I met him in Bittersweet, I was all in. I wanted to know his story. I was half in love with him already. And he did NOT disappoint. He was everything I was hoping for and more. We all, as romance readers, have characters that we’re drawn to…and not everyone’s are the same. Zach was the epitome of what tends to draw me in. He’s a bit more beta, he’s kind, he’s generous, he’s sensitive…he’s just GAH! And he has no idea how attractive he is (not just physically). I loved getting in his head, even as my heart broke for him and his own issues. I felt like we really got to watch him grow and come into his own in this book…sometimes all it takes is meeting someone who brings you out of yourself. But it wasn’t just Lark, I appreciated the way Zach’s relationship with the Shipley family grew as well. I had a completely different expectation for Lark’s character, and I honestly have no idea where it came from. And I was looking forward to that character, so you’d think I’d be disappointed right? But I wasn’t! Lark was fantastic! She was sassy, smart, kind, and dealing with an absolute nightmare. It’s not that I didn’t want to smack her when she kept trying to hide her mental state from everyone, and kept rejecting professional help, but at the same time I got it. It’s really hard to make yourself vulnerable, and to allow others to care for you and be there for you. It’s funny how it’s so much easier to see that Lark’s being a dummy assuming she’s a burden, but I know I’ve likely done the same thing in many aspects of my life…stupid human nature. I loved the way her story played out…I wasn’t sure how it was going to go, but I absolutely loved the way her PTSD was handled and how she worked through her issues. And Zach and Lark together were just sweet and smoking. I loved the way they came together, and how their relationship built. I truly felt their chemistry, and how they brought out the best in each other. I even appreciated the struggles their relationship met, but how it grew stronger in the end. I wasn’t expecting all the little side stories we got in this one. I now understand why everyone wants May’s story (and thank the baby jesus that is happening). I appreciated the way that all played out as well. Obviously I loved seeing the Shipley family again, and seeing glimpses of what was happening in all their lives. I loved learning more about Isaac and Leah, and the surprise new character we met nearer to the end…it helped give some closure to Zach’s cult story. And I loved the little teaser for Zara’s book at the end! Again, makes me want to reread Bountiful now. So yeah. It’s hard to decide, but I almost think this is even my favourite story in the series. They’re all so fantastic, but I can’t help but want to place Zach at the top. I kind of don’t want it to be over. So glad I’ll get more in a few months. I’ve also convinced my hubby we need to go find some Keepsake apple trees this summer…because they sound tasty. And that we need to visit Vermont in the fall and be one of those annoying tourists…
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Zach might be my new favorite! I mean, Griffin held a special place in my heart but Zach might have shoved him aside...gracefully. I mean, it is Zach.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow, what a story. This is a lot different from all the other romance books I've read. It was sweet, no alpha males, it was a very enjoyable read. Who knew I liked a sweetheart of a man in a romance book. =)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lisa-Lou More than 1 year ago
Keepsake by Sarina Bowen is the third standalone novel in her True North series. While books one (Bittersweet) and two (Steadfast) don't HAVE to be read to enjoy this book, the timeline is continuous throughout the series. Also, the other books are equally as fabulous! I really thought nothing could top the emotions that Jude and Sophie's book evoked but good Lord, this one was pretty darn close. Zach and Lark are so utterly different from each other. From their backgrounds to their upbringing and their views on life, except in all the ways that matter. They are such a great couple and their back and forth, their deliberation and Lark's healing process was so extremely well-written this book practically reads itself. I loved it! Enjoy!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We finally get Zach ' story. He is a beautiful human being and he and Lark ' story is one of compassion and empathy. Loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Zack was the perfect hero! The story just grabbed you and didn't let you go until the end. It was the perfect addition to an already great series
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a great addition to an amazing series.
toniFMAMTC More than 1 year ago
Zach had a difficult life growing up in a cult where he had no worth except as a work horse. He wasn't fed enough, educated properly or loved. He was whipped harshly and still has the scars. He was never shown how to be a good person, but he's practically a saint. He's first to volunteer help in any situation, and he truly cares about people. Lark has always been an adventure-seeker. She's traveled the world and had crazy times. Because of her free nature, she didn't put much stock into safety, until she was kidnapped abroad. She's suffering from PTSD. Trying to outrun her issues, she visits the Shipley's farm. I like Lark. Even with fear and depression trying to take hold in her life, she has a spark in her personality that draws you to her. Between the two of them, Zach is the one who's inexperienced sexually. I like that. He's a big, tall, muscled, thoughtful, quiet, intelligent sweetheart. I LOVE Zach. He is a beautiful human being inside and out. This series is full of great people. They work hard and live well. The Truth North series has fresh air, good food and quality people. I adore the lack of negativity and melodrama. I really recommend Keepsake. It's the type of story you can connect to emotionally and come away feeling good. The characters are the type of people you want to know in real life.
SARsam More than 1 year ago
I just finished this book, and I could not wait to share my love of it. I have enjoyed the previous books of the series, but this book, wow, it blew me away. Zach was amazing. I could not have loved him more. Of course, we got more of the Shipley family, who are great. But, this was a great story of overcoming, growth and love. As usual, Sarina Bowen is at her best when writing about difficult personal issues. This is one of my best reads of the year. Just excellent.
AboutThatStory More than 1 year ago
This was so, so good! Such an excellent story with this wonderful building friendship that turned into so much more for these two characters. A little broken and raw but so kind and sincere, I loved both Zach and Lark. I've been excited for Zach story since the first book so I loved getting to know his backstory. Great writing with a steady pace and the character development really drew me in. There was a fantastic, slow build in the first half where Lark and Zach really get to know each other and start to share and trust. Lark was having such a difficult time and putting on a brave face and I love the friendship she formed with Zach and how that grew. Zach was so sweet and delving into his character was fantastic, he was so much more than he seemed and it was fascinating seeing things through his eyes. I really liked their attraction and chemistry. Loved the heat these two have created and their slow burn to combustible. I thought there was really good progression and a nice amount of drama and conflict. I really enjoyed the dual POV's as well. I was pulled into what Lark was going through and I thought it was handled well, I could feel all the emotion. I loved watching Zach grow, from so sheltered to really standing on his own two feet. I feel like they both experienced a transformation with so much healing, it made me happy for them. They just were so much stronger than they believed themselves to be and I loved that growing confidence when they finally get it together. I loved the Shipley's and everything they bring to the table. I like what was introduced within their family and one of the characters and I’m curious to see where the author takes it. There was some awesome foreshadowing with Zara so I’m excited for what’s going to happen with her. I enjoyed all the guys and their ribbing, there were a few light hearted moments mixed in which was a nice balance with all the emotion and tension happening. Awesome addition to the series! Zach and Lark were amazing! Complimentary copy received for honest review.
cordee More than 1 year ago
I have been a huge fan of this Ms. Bowen since the first time I read one of her books. She creates unforgettable, unique and endearing characters and her stories are simply lovely. This one is no different. Zach was thrown out of the compound he grew up at for a make out session with a girl at age 19. The cult he was part of just tossed him out on the road side. He made his way hitchhiking to his friends in Vermont and has found his place with the Shipleys. Lark has always been an adventurous and headstrong girl so working for a nonprofit organization in Guatemala was right down her alley. She didn't know that she would come back from Central America with a whole set of horrific nightmares which torture her frequently. There are details she can't remember. When she decides to work for the Shipleys during the harvest season she hopes to find peace and for her soul to heal. When her nightmares become so vocal that she wakes up the whole bunkhouse Zach starts visiting her at night to calm her down. Lark's and Zach's friendship is all sorts of sweet. They have an instant bond which is based on respect and care for one another. Their relationship grows into love at a slow burn. It is exactly what you'd expect from a wonderful hero like Zach. He has been out of the compound for four years and is still experiencing "first times". The way he does is darn cute, it is as if he sees things through children's eyes. The exhilaration, the joy, the fascination. There is a childlike innocence about him. Zach is an amazing human being, wise beyond his young age, soft spoken, inherently good down to his soul, attentive and has perfect manners. It's the kind of person you want to have in your life. Lark is a strong and lively but tortured heroine. She has to work through a lot of problems which aren't obvious at first. When it's time to slay her dragons she does so with great courage. I also love about her that she is such a great friend, not just for Zach but also for May Shipley. This woman feels deeply, doesn't like drama and is loyal to the core. The troubles she has accepting Zach's love are understandable - she needs to heal before she can. The pace of the story is a bit on the slower side but Sarina Bowen's effortlessly flowing writing style makes up for it. She has a way of writing as if she were talking to a friend telling stories. It's something that I've seen only a few times. Her knowledge about apples and Vermont is vast and I could picture the landscape and Shipleys Farm so well. I am also happy that we got to spend time with the whole Shipley family and Jude. There were hilarious dialogues and when Zach had sex for the first time in his life - I cracked up. The True North series is a winner in my books so I'll keep on reading them as long as this author writes these stories. There is something in them that reminds me of a warm hug: love, friendship, comfort. And that is what keeps me coming back.
KrissysBookNook More than 1 year ago
This book is ABSOLUTELY a TOP READ of 2016!!! Keepsake is the third book in Sarina Bowen’s True North series, but it can totally be read as a standalone. (But I promise you’re going to want to read all three books anyway.) The hero of this book is so different from any of the hero’s I’ve read lately that I’ve been dying to reading Zach’s story since book one, Bittersweet. Our heroine, Lark, is besties with Grumpy Griff’s eldest sister May. She has gone through a terrifying ordeal while in Guatemala and is seeking refuge on the Shipley’s farm. Lark has kind-of a wild child personality and even though she is much more subdued that she normally had been, she’s still a big contrast to Zach’s much quieter personality. I ADORED this book y’all. This book has THE HOTTEST love scene that I’ve EVER read! (And you KNOW the crazy amount of love scene’s that I’ve read. lol) I knew there was something about Zachariah that I was going to love, but Sarina Bowen surpassed my expectations with this book and cemented her place in the KBN book hall of fame. I give Keepsake 5 out of 5 Krissy’s Stars! Xo- K * I was generously given an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Nicola_1202 More than 1 year ago
3.5 "Hang in there" stars This series has been a bit of a mixed bag for me so far; Bittersweet didn't blow me away, Steadfast did, and Keepsake is nestled right between the two. "He was bright and shiny and flawless. And I wasn’t any of those things." Zach is no stranger to those of us who have read the series and, because I knew of his history, I must admit that I went in with a certain level of expectation; a hero who has escaped living in a cult isn't one you meet everyday. You can't deny the fact that the man is a complete darling and he and Lark have a lovely chemistry which is slower burn due to both their circumstances and experiences, that's understandable, however for me the storyline lacked that punch I was waiting for and when it came to Zach's lack of experience, his past and Lark's PTSD, opportunities to make them and their journey shine, were missed. "I have as dirty a mind as anyone else. Just haven’t put it to recent use." That said, it was by no means a difficult read and I do like Sarina Bowen's writing; Zack is Lark's rock and I loved his quiet, gentle, supportive nature, but it took a tad too long to gather pace, Lark wasn't a heroine who particularly stood out for me and I was hoping for more depth sooner. I love the Vermont setting, the Shipley's all bring value and humour, and the book wouldn't be complete without them, but after reading Steadfast which took this series to a new height for me, Keepsake fell a little short. I am pleased though to see that the door has been left open for more in the series. ARC provided in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago