Romancing the Stacks: The Ones That Got Away

Welcome to Romancing the Stacks. This is a series of reviews featuring one of my favorite genres: Romance Novels! Nothing is better than curling up with a good romance. This review will explore The Ones that Got Away by Roni Loren.

I had picked up the third book in this series (as is typical of me) , but was confused by the summary. A girl’s sister had tragically died and it was her fault. A boy whose brother did something terrible. My first thought was drunk driver. I looked up the book and found out the first one was available. I went to read the summary for that one and everything made sense. It was not about a drunk driver. These romance book series focus on survivors of a school shooting. The ones that got away is not about lost high school love like I thought, but school shooting survivors. I was a little iffy about reading this book. I didn’t understand why anyone would want to set a romance novel against a school shooting backdrop. I thought about it though and unfortunately being a survivor in a school shooting is all to common in this day and age. I think this book shows that a horrible thing can happen to anyone, but good things can also happen too. Sometimes people let that one bad thing that happen to them define their life, but it doesn’t have to be that way.


It’s been twelve years since tragedy struck the senior class of Long Acre High School. Only a few students survived that fateful night – a group the media dubbed The Ones Who Got Away. Liv Arias thought she’d never return to Long Acre – until a documentary brings her and the other survivors back home. Suddenly her old flame, Finn Dorsey, is closer than ever, and their attraction is still white-hot. When a searing kiss reignites their passion, Liv realizes this rough-around-the-edges cop might be exactly what she needs.

Book Review:

I really liked this book. Both character were traumatized by what happen in high school. Liv was force to deal with panic attacks after the gun man held a gun to her head, but let her live as she was not on his list. Finn dealt with the fact that he abandoned Liv and lead the gun man right to her by becoming an undercover cop who defeats the bad guys. Finn and Liv were a high school Romeo and Juliet that never recovered from the school shooting. Each was just surviving but they found strength in each other and being with each other. The romantic in me is like love can bloom even in the worst circumstances. One complaint I have about the book is that at the end everything was wrapped up to neatly. Now that she has Finn, Liv no longer has panic attacks. I know that is how romance books are, but panic attacks are not solved with true love. I wish that the book had her continue with her panic attacks, but showed healthy ways that she was dealing with it. It showed in the past she dealt with the panic attacks with drugs, alcohol, and sex, so it would have been nice to see the contrast. I suffered a few panic attacks as a teen, so this true love cure really gets me. I thought the author created realistic characters, until the end. Besides that I liked the characters, I liked the story. I like the female friends who were going to be the leads in the next books and I am happy to saw I will continue with the series. I will recommend this book unless you can’t get past the school shooting backdrop.

The Ones that Got Away:

  1. The Ones that Got Away
  2. The One You Can’t Forget
  3. The One You Fight For
  4. The One For You (2019 Release)


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