Golden Hour

by Kat Jackson

Lina Ragelis prides herself on her bravery and strength, two traits that have served her well in her career in the US Army. Having been disconnected from her family since she turned eighteen, Lina has learned to rely solely on herself—and her slightly overbearing best friend—and she swears she prefers it that way.

It’s an easy lie for someone who has spent her entire life dodging love. Lina’s pretty certain that she’s damaged goods. But the truth is, she’s the kind of person everyone wants in their corner, and the kind of woman many women want to love.

Having had more than her fair share of challenges and hardships, there isn’t much that scares Lina. Life would be so much easier if she were afraid of something basic—like spiders—instead of something significant. Something like real, true, healthy love.

Genre General Fiction, Romance
Length 250 pages
Publication Date July 14, 2022
Publisher Bella Books
ISBN 9781642473971A
Editor Alissa McGowan
Cover Designer Heather Honeywell


GCLS Goldie Awards
Golden Hour — Finalist, General Fiction.


"Several summers ago, I was riding my bike down Beach Road, and somewhere between Nags Head and Kitty Hawk I pulled closer to the dunes to send a quick text.

“I can’t get Lina out of my head.”

After writing Across the Hall, a book that features her as a somewhat mysterious side character, I wasn't exactly surprised that Lina never left me. I knew she had a story to tell, but it took some time for me to figure out exactly what that story would be.

Golden Hour is the roller coaster journey of Lina’s healing, growth, and acceptance of love. It’s a small departure from what some may expect a romance novel to be, but trust me: This book was written with every fiber of my heart, and where there is loss, there is always love. Sometimes it just takes us a little longer to find it."

—Kat Jackson


Alice G. - The mind is as beautiful as it is fragile, and this book does a marvelous job showcasing its duality. The main characters take a bit to find their footing, but once they do the synergetic relationship is soul-renewing.

It is a soul heavy read, but worth every heart clench. I was swept away by the effortless dialogue, the funny repartee, and the scenery depicted throughout each chapter. I was beyond grateful that this was not love at first sight. Instead, it's love through trial and tribulation. It's a friendship and a courting that allows growth and comfort and trust to develop organically. It's being real- going into a relationship that says this will be hard, but I see you, you matter to me, and I am here for it all.

Dominique V. - I am coming to find that I really love books by Kat Jackson, she manages to pull me in on an emotional level and I enjoyed the pairing between Lina and Regan very much. The way Lina's PTSD was handled and described gave the book more depth than the average romance novel and when it's done in the way Jackson does it, it's very much lifting the book to a next level. Golden Hour can be read as a standalone, yet Lina was first introduced in an earlier book (Across the Hall) and that couple has a role in this one as Lina's best friends. Highly recommended!

Henrietta B. - Golden Hour surprised and impressed me by its depth and gritty narration. Lina is a veteran and not all is glory. Even as a lab technician she paid a steep price. With great skill Jackson immerses the reader into Lina‘s mental struggles. This is not always an easy read but so rewarding. I loved how Jackson lets us experience Lina’s struggles firsthand. The character development is excellent. The darker aspects were balanced by the setting and sun-setting of the story in the Outer Banks, the caring of Lina‘s friends (cameo-appearances from Across the Hall) and the slow emergence of a new life and love. An excellent and compelling read.

Michele R. - Kat Jackson is quickly becoming a favorite author who excels at character development and developing a solid backstory for her characters. She also writes interesting secondary characters, like Caitlin, Mallory, and Keeley, who help move the story forward. Regan, as Lina’s eventual girlfriend, was also a great addition to this story. She really demonstrated her caring nature for Lina and what Lina was experiencing with PTSD. 4.25 stars

Orlando J. - This is a beautiful book full of joy and heartbreak. Lina, who we met (and I fell love with) in Across the Hall is our protagonist, and Jackson really puts her through the wringer. Reading this genuinely made me cry, but also laugh my ass off at times. Kat Jackson genuinely is one of the most talented authors out there right now.

Karen C. - I absolutely lucked into reading Kat Jackson's debut novel, Begin Again, a couple of years ago, and since then she has become one of my favorite authors. Among her now four books, there is not one cookie-cutter or standard trope used, and I have to say it's really refreshing. I can't imagine many other authors out there brave enough to tackle an army PTSD story, especially today, when the definitive series on the subject has already been written and knocked out of the park (I'm looking at you, E. J. Noyes). Kat Jackson does it masterfully.

There are so many aspects to Golden Hour that make this a completely different story. Obviously, when a character is dealing with PTSD we have to know what caused the trauma in their earlier life. Jackson intersperses the flashbacks so perfectly well-timed that it's almost impossible to stop reading because we MUST know what happened. The flashbacks are told in past tense, but the present day is told in third person present tense from Lina's POV, and it really works.

The peripheral characters, who are friends and co-workers of the MCs, are extremely well developed. But what I really loved about this book is that Lina and Regan aren't each other’s type, so the friends-to-reluctant-lovers is perfection. I never wanted this book to end.

Bonnie K. - This was a well written beautiful heart felt story. I loved how Kat’s writing addressed Lina’s PTSD, it really gave the story depth. Well done!! I recommend 4.5 stars

Laura G. - I applaud Kat Jackson for writing this book. This is a subject that isn’t easy but in ignoring its existence, we do a disservice to all those who risked their lives for our freedom, who suffer from PTSD. Golden Hour is more than a story of a character trying to cope with her past, it is a book that is laced with laugh out loud moments, beautiful coastal views and characters who will stay with you long after you have read the last page.

Jo R. - Kat Jackson has written another excellent book! If you've not already, check some of her other books out. Golden Hour is no exception, I love her writing style and her books have ‘drawn’ me in.

Claire E. - Rapidly becoming one of my favourite lesbian authors, she writes intelligent books that explore more than just a romance.

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