Finding Forever is the third book in the series. Your Way is the name of the gym Stella owns with her best friends Frankie (one of the main characters of Finding Home) and Desi (from Finding Family). In her mid-fifties, Stella is the oldest woman in this group of friends, and a widow. Her wife Danielle, the love of her life, died six years ago. Encouraged by her friends, Stella has tried dating here and there but her heart has never been quite into it. Sofia, on the other hand, is one of the youngest in the group and, up until recently, a player. Through their respective best friends, Stella and Sofia became close friends too, but they’re now feeling more for one another. The twenty years age difference stops Stella from allowing herself to fall in love, that and the fact that she believes she already had her forever. That most of their friends seem to believe they definitely wouldn’t work isn’t helping.
Stella is my favourite character in the series and I was very much looking forward to her story. I think it’s because she’s probably the character I’d most likely crush on in real life. I don’t usually picture what the characters look like. I have a hard time remembering hair colour and other details authors describe, I get an impression of a whole rather than any kind of image. In Stella’s case, however, I had a very clear image of her (and I have no idea if that’s how the author wrote her, I don’t remember at all). To me, Stella is Marg Helgenberger’s twin. And she’s hot in an unassuming way. I remembered Sofia from the previous books and thought she was a good supporting character but I didn’t expect to like her so much. She’s loud and over the top but also kind and sweet and unknowingly romantic. She’s a very good fit for Stella.
Finding Forever is a friends-to-lovers romance. As a result, the relationship is already well established by the time chemistry rears its head. What would have looked like instalove in different circumstances has been years in the making and makes so much sense that when the big declarations come, they bring all the pieces together. Moody makes the change from friends to lovers sound self-evident, the way looks linger when they didn’t before, touches that were mostly comforting now ignite. I also liked how she made Sofia truly reveal herself through this process, her respect for Stella’s boundaries and her determination to show her how good they could be together.
Besides the two main characters, I really like the group of friends in this series, even though Moody didn’t show them in their best light in this instalment (except for one of them, and I was really glad Stella and Sofia had her support).
As I wrote above, this is Moody’s best-written book so far, at least among the ones I have read. There are still too many words at times, unnecessary descriptions of minutiae that slow the story down, but it all flows a lot more naturally. Finding Forever is definitely my favourite book by Jamey Moody so far.