Left Drowning by Jessica Park
My rating: ★ 5 Breathtaking Stars ★
~ Even when you're drowning and so far under, there is always time to reach for someone who will teach you how to breathe again. ~
I have read some amazing books
Books that capture your attention, entertain you and even break you.
Some books are even more amazing, that they take you to places that you have never been before, somewhere that you never would of expected. Evoking emotions that take a hold of you.
And then there are the books like Left Drowning.
Where every word slowly pierces your heart.
You feel every hit, every intense emotion, you find yourself holding your breathe.
Sometimes you just get it.
You live it, you breathe it.
You sit back and think… This book was written for me.
You are so blown away that an author is able to touch every part of your heart with words. Words written on paper.
Words that left you hanging on for more but at the same time you want it to end. You don't want to feel these feelings.
Left Drowning is in a league of it's own.
It's one of those books that leave you so unprepared with the events, the emotions, and even the connections.
It has this ability to destroy you.
Your holding on to the hope that not only will the people in the story will be ok, but you to will be ok.
The loss of her parents and the estrangement with her younger brother, has Blythe purely existing in her life.
Spending her days just making it through college and her nights spent with alcohol. Blythe plays the role, just pretending, holding out hope for a connection.
~ "I can't look at myself because I cannot stomach looking at a girl who has so little hope left, who is inexcusably weak. I am humiliated by my own inability to do better." ~
Blythe's whole life is about to be turned upside down by the Shepherd siblings.
We first meet Sabin.
Sabin, Sabin Sabin. Sigh my gosh I loved Sabin. You can tell in Park's writing that Sabin is someone special to her.
Sabin is Blythe's first friend, he situates himself in her life, no questions asked and from the very beginning you just know he was going to be one hell of a character.
~ "You caught me! In my case the question should be why am I up so late?"
I smile shyly. "Oh, I see."
We sit without speaking for a few minutes, my hand still in his, while he looks at me expectantly. I should take my hand away, but I simply can't. He is to odd and too endearing. ~
Then we meet Chris....
Chris wakens Blythe from the first moment. Her connection to him feels one-sided but as we get more of the story we learn that Chris is as much damaged as our Blythe.
~ "I went too far with you and I shouldn't have. I'm not really boyfriend material."
"Did you ever consider that I'm not girlfriend material?"
"Yes, you are. You're outstanding girlfriend material. I'm the one who's all kinds of fucked up. Trust me." ~
Chris pulls Blythe from the darkness she has been living in. She begins to heal, and even, haltingly, to love this guy who helps her find new paths to pleasure and self-discovery.
~ "Feel me." He inhales and his chest press into me.
"Breathe," he tells me. "Breathe with me." ~
Chris would have to be my favourite character to date.
His relationships with his siblings was just beautiful. You could see the man he was just by his actions with his family.
Yes, he doesn't commit to Blythe, he is totally upfront with her about that. His honesty doesn't take away that their connection is real.
And yes I hate that in books when the male can't commit, but I just felt that Park paced their story so perfectly you knew in time he would grow.
~ He is a fighter. I am not. And yet we are unquestionably linked. ~
I have read plenty of steamy sex scenes. And there has to be something said for Park's ability at intense and raw description. My God was the sex intense. You could feel the raw passion come at you in waves reading Chris and Blythe together.
~ Chris starts to slide in and out a little faster, staying deep when he goes in and then pulling almost entirely. Each time he enters me sets off another wave of hunger for him. I feel absolutely out of control, but for once its in the best way possible because its the most natural sense of exhilaration I've ever had. ~
But their relationship was so much more than sex, love or the strong friendship they held. It was so much more. It was a connection like no other and while your reading and falling in love with them both, their connection is what takes hold of you.
~ When Chris and I touch, it's different. I think of the feel of water. The way it is when you wade into the ocean and a small wave cascades against you, swirling sand over you and awakening every pore. ~
But Chris's past still holds him back.
This is where I just felt so broken. So helpless for Chris and Blythe. My heart was hurting so much that you would do anything to help them.
~ "How can I possibly say good-bye to the person I am so hopelessly, deeply, and permanently in love with? Because I love you, Chris. I do. I will always be in love with you, even though you'll never love me back. you have been my sanctuary this year. You saved me. Do you know that? You saved me. And I wish that you would let me save you." ~
Just how Chris Saves Blythe, It is Blythe that saves Chris and his Family from the truths of their pasts.
~ "Don't you see, Chris? You and I are supposed to be together. Not because we have to be together. There is always a choice. This is not an obligation or a duty. But our lives are entwined, they have been, for good reasons. I've know that from the moment I set my eyes on you. It never made sense to me before. How I felt so deeply connected to you before we'd even spoken. But I did, and I do. I have loved you since that day on the dock. Probably even before that. I feel as though I have loved you my entire life. Please, Chris, I'm right here. I want to go through life with you. I am begging you, Christopher. Begging you with all of my heart. Let me take care of you the way that you gave taken care of me." ~
There is no possible way for me to finish this review this without giving away key elements so all I am going to say is that YOU HAVE TO READ THIS!
There is no maybe or thinking about it guys. THIS IS A MUST READ.
Left Drowning is a beautiful love story full of pain and hurt, love and passion but it was just as much a story about family, about beautiful sibling relationships. About letting go of the past and learning how to survive. It's about living, breathing and healing.
I am constantly blown away by the pure talent of some authors that its mind boggling.
Jessica Park not only had to put Blythe, Chris and their siblings back together, she had to put me back to together!
Her writing was heartbreaking but cleansing. She held me captivated from the dedication.
She will take you on a ride that will have you begging to get off, but at the same time want to line right back up to get back on.
~ Our connection elicits the past and the truth from each of us. He thinks that's crazy, but I don't. It defies my lack of belief in God and fate, but I know this to be an absolute and unexplainable truth. ~
~ ARC courtesy of author in exchange for an honest review
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