They steal our hearts. They steal our breath.
They steal our sanity.
And we let them.
Over and over and over again.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
They say you never forget your first time.
Mine was with a homeless musician who effed my brains out under a bridge.
He was my first love. And fourteen years later, I still can’t get him out of my head.
He broke all my rules.
He also broke my heart.
I watched him climb to stardom, cheering him on from afar.
But I was never a fan; just a girl in love.
Like a tornado, he spiraled, leaving a path of destruction in his wake.
But love conquers all, right? It has to. Because here I stand, ravaged and ruined, needing it to be true.
You can’t go back, but I want to. Back to the bridge. Back to when he sang only for me. Before he was famous. Before he shattered my heart.
I thought I knew everything about him.
But I could not have been more wrong.
He promised me every tomorrow. And here I am, waiting.
5 « not for everyone » stars
“But what we have is a real love. It’s dark, and ugly; raw and passionate. It brings pain and it brings happiness and everything in between. This love—our love—is a love that never dies. It withers in the dark and comes back to life again under bright moments even stronger than it was before.”
Warning : this book touches on some sensitive subjects so read with caution like drug abuse and mental illness.
This is the third time that I try to write this review…
Why is it the books that we love the most that are the most difficult to review???
Ok here I go …
Carian Cole took me way out of my comfort zone here!
I didn’t know it when I requested the ARC that one of the main topics would be about addiction to drugs. I avoid books with addicts like the plague, running the other way but as I love Carian’s books I read it anyway and …. have been on a roller coaster yet amazed.
I never would have believed it if someone told me that one day I would read and love a book with such topic!
Why did I love it? Because Carian’s penmanship was uncompromising.
She wrote “real and true”. Carian showed the complexity and bleak reality of loving and caring for someone with “problems” (sorry I stay vague here).
She did not paint an unrealistic and rosy picture.
She did not promise that love saves everyone in the blink of an eye and being addict you can be saved from all your personal demons only through pure love. No.
But she also did not try to darken the story either and make it some mockery of being an addict.
She did not paint her character as a heinous villain who deserves to suffer and hurt.
No, her character is addicted yet is a fantastic human being. Someone caring, kind yet suffering from many demons. Her character did not ask for it.
This is Piper and Blue often toxic yet beautiful and real love story.
Their attraction has been instantaneous and Blue will turn Piper’s world upside down. She won’t recognize the girl she’s become. She won’t believe what she did under that bridge.
“I’m going to make you dirty, too. And it’s never going to wash off. “
Some will be horrified by what happened there. Most who know Carian will understand. Because her love stories are never easy and simple. Because she writes about human nature at its best and at its lowest. Because we all have flaws and real life is not like the fairy tales with rainbow and unicorns every day.
Some will be irritated by Piper.
They will see her as a kind of “doormat” like her father did at some time.
They won’t understand why she puts up with all this. Why is she still in love with Blue after all that he’s done to her? After all the broken promises. They will want to tell her to leave him and begin again with someone stable, uncomplicated.
And that’s true that it takes a special person to love, care and stay with people “like” Blue.
When Pipper meets Blue she is wary of him. Yet soon enough with him she will feel beautiful, cherished and not the clumsy tiny woman everyone has always seen in her.
Blue has a presence. A magnetism that will enthrall Pipper.
For him she’ll go through hell.
Yet love has no expiration date and sometimes you can’t stop loving someone even if you know he will break your heart again and again.
As for Blue he is a very complex and restless character.
Carian writes some of the most beautiful flawed male characters that I’ve read about. Vandal and Tyler are two of these broken characters. Yet Blue is by far the most complex, tortured yet so so lovable.
Of course I wanted to let him go as he hurt Piper so many times yet I couldn’t help understand Piper. I have what is commonly called “the savior complex” and would have been unable to turn my back on Blue. Exactly like Piper who found her soul mate and wanted to love and help him so bad!
“As much as I love the sound of the rain, the moody grey clouds and the rainbows, the storms trap me. I can’t stand the thunder and lightning and all the wind. That’s when I need you the most. You’re like my own little sunbeam.” A weak smile touches his lips. “You chase the storm away.”
This book is all about their relationship throughout the span of more than 10 years. Their love is true but complicated, violent, heartbreaking.
You will smile thanks to Acorn the dog waving at people leaving change for Blue when he plays the guitar.
You will always be on edge. Waiting for the shoe to drop. For Blue to mess it up.
You will swoon and you will cry. You will rage because they didn’t deserve this. You will admire Piper because she could set a limit and protect herself when it was vital yet still love Blue. And believe me that’s not easy feat!
You will FEEL.
One thing that’s for sure: you won’t feel indifferent.
What are your triggers/pet peeve in books?
Thanks for reading!
Nice review, Sophie! This sounds like a great read but I really hate doormat heroines in my romance reads.
Me too Raven but I assure you Piper is no doormat. She is compassionate, very patient but can stay strong when needed 😉
Great review Sophie – i am intrigued! I really love a book every now and again that throws me off of a cliff and takes me out of my comfort zone. I tend to steer away and fight off reading books that might me cry or seem too emotional, but sometimes I just need it to ‘feel’ like you mentioned. One of my peeves is way to much back and forth for too long in a romance – it gets annoying!!
Well Daisy there was back and forth but honestly it did not feel dragging or annoying as it’s also one of my pet peeves!
Oh! That was just one of my pet peeves – not in particular relation to this story. Glad to hear this isn’t like that tho, because you had me so intrigued, I changed up my TBR and started this last night! I’m not to far into it yet, but I’m stressed about the wringer this might put me through. I haven’t read this author before, so I don’t really know what to expect, although I know you did warn me. Curiosity killed the cat and all…LOL!