If I would have known then what I know now.
If I would have known that having my heart broken at thirteen by my one and only friend, Garrett Rhodes, would never compare to the empty feeling at sixteen when I buried my mother.
If I would have known that changing schools in my senior year would throw all that back in my face.
Maybe … just maybe … I wouldn’t be in the hell storm I’m living in these days. Letting my past dictate my future, allowing the best of the best male MMA fighters bully me day in and day out and knowing no matter what I do, Garrett will always be the only man that understands me. I didn’t have to live this way. One day changed the course of my life forever.
Through all this mess, the one thing that I’ve found that keeps me centered … martial arts. And I’m damn good. If only someone would give me a chance to prove my worth.
All I can do now is make the best of it and try to not let the fight consume me.
Or has it already?
I would and could easily recommend this book to anyone. It was an epic love story that wasn’t technically a second chance romance, but an amazing tale of true love never giving up and powering through every single obstacle thrown your way. There was a lot, READ: A LOT, of drama thrown Rian’s way….but it was not overly unbelievably dramatic. It was a hard road to travel with her….she got the blunt end of every stick, but the underlying love and friendship she found in Garrett was indescribable. It was literally perfect. Not even fairytale-can’t-believe-it perfect, it was seriously, undeniably, absolutely believable in every way.
I have a new book boyfriend named Garrett.
Stand back ladies. He is a panty melting, heart stopping and ruggedly sexy. He is such a man too….his daddy raised him right! All manners and a perfect gentleman, with such a swooonworthy side to him. Oh my gosh….I freaking loved him!! LOVED him!
Rian has lost everyone in her life…..and I mean EVERYone. She goes through heartache like nothing else….all before she turns 18. Decisions she has to make, life changing decisions, no decision a child should ever have to make, all shape her outtake on life as she makes them, one by one.
It’s better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all.
Rian begins to understand this saying all too well when Garrett re-enters her life after his family had to move away….leaving her to fend for herself at such a young age. She finds him again, and the story blossoms from there. A love so pure and innocent stemming from such a young age was so beautifully written that it was so *fun* to read. I loved smiling at their innocence while squirming at their exploration. It was captivating….I didn’t want to stop reading. I devoured this book in one day….it really was so good.
“Baby, this isn’t even love. It’s so much more. The feelings I have for you go far beyond what most people will ever experience in their lives.” ~Garrett
Oh my gosh….you see that?? *SWOON* She was his everything, and he was hers. I loved how Garrett was always there, always taking care of her, but not so in your face. He was so subtle, but ensured she never had anything to worry about. Until one decision that he makes, to ensure their future, backfires and hurts Rian, who is blindsided by a decision that he made in her/their best interest. But since she is already so jaded by all the heartache she has had to endure, she can’t see past the initial decision.
Rian understands running away…it is what helps her deal. But, she makes a life for herself and carries on. She unfortunately lets her fears of being abandoned dictate her life though. That is hard to watch when she has someone there that is SO willing to do anything and everything FOR her, to take care of her, to love her….but pain and fear rear their ugly heads.
“Everything that’s happened in your life has led to this point. You have to be the one to decide if you’re going to let it eat you alive or if you’re gonna kick it in the dick and push forward. You’ve never been one of those weak girls, Rian.”
As we follow through Rian’s story, we get to see pain, love and heartache, joy and fear, ugly and beautiful. Rian and Garrett’s journey was one of love and acceptance, from the beginning to the end. I truly really enjoyed this book and was super excited because this was my first book by Ashley. I wasn’t too sure what to expect, but her voice in this book was so easy to read and so relatable.
4 stars for this great standalone read.
"We’re not just a little while kinda thing, Rian. We’re the ones who are gonna make it—we’re forever." ~Garrett
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ashley Suzanne, an Amazon Best Selling Author, is a married mother of three little boys as well as a daughter, aunt, sister, best friend, birth mother, blogger, book whore and author. Ashley is a native to the suburbs of Detroit, with most of her family living in Kentucky and New York.
You can usually find Ashley sitting in bed, with her laptop, playing on Facebook, pretending to write, entering giveaways (she's also a swag whore) or on a football field with her oldest son, Tyler. Yep, not only is she a football fan, she's a football mom!
When she's reading, it's typically something to do with romance, erotica being her favorite genre. She's a total fan-girl over a few authors, Pamela Ann, Brooke Cumberland, SE Hall, Madeline Sheehan, Jasinda Wilder, Hilary Storm, CM Stunich and Riley Rhea to name a few.
Ashley has no pets, unless you count her children and she is a little OCD. Her favorite color is pink. Her favorite drink is cherry vodka and coke and double chocolate brownies are a must.
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