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5 Emotionally stunning stars
I’m feeling completely dumbstruck right now. Slightly traumatised and emotionally wrecked, but oh so swept away in this amazing story!
There’s a phrase in this book that I love – “naked truth” – and that’s exactly what this story is. It’s real, and it’s raw, and it’s honestly one of the most soul-baring books I’ve read. It’s incredibly emotional, and definitely not an easy read but it’s an important story that is ultimately uplifting, and it’s written so beautifully. I’m honestly still gobsmacked by all that I just read.
I knew nothing going into this story and that’s exactly how it needed to be. I’ve read all of Coho’s work, but this book was completely unexpected, and in order to allow others to experience what I just experienced, this is going to be a vague review.
It’s the story of a woman – a normal, everyday woman who falls in love. We get to know Lily as she is finally finding her place in the world, and as she meets and falls for a wonderful man. We also get to see her teenage years, and relive the story of her first love and the profound impact that he, and her childhood, had on her life.
“You saved my life, Lily,” he said to me. “And you weren’t even trying.”
The blurb leads you to think this book contains a love triangle, but it doesn’t. There just happen to be two men in Lily’s life who both have a strong influence. One is her first love, the other is the man she falls head over heels for. And wow, did these men have me conflicted! You will love them both, but there is so much more going on in the story than you could anticipate, that your heart will break for them both as well. Seriously. I’m sitting here still struggling to come to terms with my feelings.
Fifteen seconds. That’s all it takes to completely change everything about a person. Fifteen seconds that we’ll never get back.
And then there’s Lilly. Just wow. What an incredible heroine she is! Her strength, her vulnerability, her intelligence and huge heart absolutely won me over. Her journey is wonderful, heartbreaking and shocking, but through it all she absolutely shines. There wasn’t a moment that I didn’t feel what she was going through, and there wasn’t a moment that I disagreed with anything that she did. She is honest, flawed, and absolutely wonderful.
I feel like everyone fakes who they really are, when deep down we’re all equal amounts of screwed up. Some of us are just better at hiding it than others.
As always with a Coho book there is fantastic dialogue and banter, and the dynamics between all of the characters is written so well, with a sensational cast of characters that will make you laugh, cry and steal your heart. There is romance, yes, but different from what I expected – sweet, fun, sexy and heart-stealing, but painful at times, and it ties in to the story perfectly.
He brings his hands up to my cheeks. “In the future…if by some miracle you ever find yourself in the position to fall in love again…fall in love with me.”
I loved the way Hoover wrote this story. I laughed, I cried, I fell in love and I lost myself in Lily’s world. Every moment is meaningful, building to create a profound story that took me by complete surprise and had me on the edge of my seat. This book made me think, it made me giddy with happiness, and it absolutely shattered me. My God, did it make me feel. There were passages in this book that I read over and over again just to take them in and truly soak in the words and their meaning, just revelling in the writing that held me so captivated from the very first page.
Even now just thinking about this story there are tears in my eyes.
There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.
Colleen Hoover has delved into her depths as a writer and has given us a story that is truly very special. An unforgettable read.