"Two hearts, two minds, in time did find one love, one aim two paths the same. Hold fast... and love will last.” ~ Matt Buttram
In Red Dirt Heart 4 by N.R. Walker, the story is told from Travis's perspective, which is, for me, the most special of all. This is Travis's poignant story of finding where his heart belongs in the red dirt of the Outback with his beloved and sometimes impossible Charlie.
Even from the beginning, Travis knows Charlie is the one. He meets this strong, tough, distant man who has made a point of isolating himself from others and, like no one else, he can see through Charlie's tough exterior, straight into his soul. With the stubbornness of a mule and the patience of a saint, Travis stands there like a brick wall, facing up to Charlie's temper, stubbornness, self-doubt, and his fear of becoming his father. Travis leads him by the hand when Charlie lets him, sometimes using gentle coercing, promises of love and sexual favors; yet leaves him alone when he knows that's what Charlie needs most; but Travis lets Charlie know that, no matter what happens, Travis is there for him. His only request for Charlie is that he never shuts out Travis completely. Travis gently encourages Charlie to learn to let him share his thoughts and feelings, even if they are not good ones. Travis can't be the part of Charlie's life he needs to be if he doesn't talk to him about what he's thinking. This is no small request for someone who has taught himself not to share his innermost emotions with anyone, not even the people he's known most of his life.
Even when Travis is forced to leave Charlie to go back home on family business, he tries his best to reassure Charlie that he will be back as soon as he can. Although Travis is frustrated with Charlie's lack of faith in him returning, he never stops trying to be there for him. It would be exhausting for me to be in Travis's situation. Although it breaks Travis's heart sometimes, he always tries to help Charlie feel secure enough to realize that Travis loves him more than life and will never leave him, but Travis perseveres. Travis is right there for Charlie as he fights the demons of his father's abuse and fear that he will end up like his father—cold, unfeeling, and full of resentment, never able to love anyone. Again, Travis waits, pointing out how he's not like his father in those ways until Charlie finally accepts that for fact and begins to believe in himself. In fact, Charlie comes to realize that he can be like his father, especially business-wise, without resenting being his son. He dismisses the bad things he feels and appreciates the good ones. Charlie finally accepts himself which enables him to open his heart to Travis and form one of the most beautiful love stories I've ever read.
If you are a romantic like me, you simply can't pass up this series. It has it all: action, adventure, angst, love, and personal growth in abundance. It's the best anatomy of a relationship I've ever read. Fans of the series are going to love the conclusion about two hearts which become one; it's a hard earned love, but the results are spectacular. I can't urge those of you who haven't read the series enough to do so. If not, you are missing out on a great piece of romantic literature. The series must be read in sequential order because one story builds on the next, but it will be more than worth it for the enjoyment the series will bring you. When thinking of a couple brings tears to my eyes and warmth to my heart the way Charlie and Travis do, I know that N.R. Walker has done her job most excellently. Travis and Charlie will always be special to me and I will miss them intensely. Thanks, N.R., for bringing these two special men into my life and allowing me to share their trials and tribulations with them.