Wednesday 23 May 2018

Review ~ Kiss Me Like You Mean It by JR Rogue

Book Description:

My love is poison. His kiss is mine. 

“The first time he saw me I was shattered glass, and he was a shadow. If I had stayed, he would have just faded away.”

It’s strange how easy it is to tell our stories to a stranger’s eyes. The truth about Connor Stratford and I had always been a sad tale. Over ten years of chasing, tears, lies, vows, and leaving. Two people who never loved each other at the same time, but couldn’t let each other go.

Now here I was telling our story over drinks midday in an airport bar with my old diary clutched in my hand. Telling some version of our story, anyway.

I left him once with no goodbye. Now I was returning home to give him what he needed to move on.

“It’s important. It’s what you’re thinking.”

I knew what his message meant, sent in the middle of the night after I woke from a fever dream. 

He was finally ready, and so was I. I just needed to finally give him the kiss he begged for. 
The one that meant goodbye.

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Our Review:

Reviewed by Donna ~ 4 stars

“You can only go to sleep with tear-stained pillows for so long.”

JR Rogue is a new to me author and it was the synopsis that really captured my attention and made me want to read it. I have to say that this author is insanely talented, the way she strings her words together, sentences, paragraphs and pages is exquisite. Lyrical prose that reads like poetry, effortless, emotional and bewitching. This was a book that I couldn’t put down, another night with hardly any sleep as I devoured the pages effortlessly.

“But the problem with broken people pouring broken love into humans molded from their own flesh was you could see all of your lacking in their eyes.”

This book is hard hitting and covers a range of subjects that are times are uncomfortable and yet I couldn’t put it down. A book with characters so messed up that it was hard to understand at times and yet the author then throws a glimpse to the past that makes everything crystal clear. I thought this was a work of pure fiction, but knowing it was based on the authors own experiences made this harder to read and I felt a bit sick that I enjoyed this book as much as I did. I felt empathy and sympathy for our heroine, but her actions made her hard to love at times, but none the less, once the I’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed the author went some way to justifying her actions.

“And what were you used to?”
“Being used for nothing more than my skin.”

I highlighted so much of this book, I mean, I highlight a lot, but the sentences and paragraphs in this book are unparalleled such was my attachment to this authors words. So why not 5 stars? The timeline is extremely jumpy, which I do not mind if it is clearly defined. However, in this book it just shifts with no heads up and at times I found myself going back and re-reading to make sure I understood whereabouts I was in their story. This detracted from my enjoyment as it kept me outside of the story when all I wanted to do was just sit down and devour it.

“Grief can alter your body rapidly. Grief had been altering her heart for years and I ignored it.”

The authors words are effortless and emotional and my connection to these characters was all in. I felt everything, I had tears, I felt the regret, I felt the uncertainty, I felt our heroines pain. Gwen’s life was a car crash of epic proportions and I felt like a voyeur looking in and yet…I couldn’t look away. Emotion oozes from every page, you could tell that this was personal, you could tell that this came from experience, the rawness, the brutal honesty was tragic, so damn tragic and yet you couldn’t help but champion Gwen to find some stability, accept that she could be loved, no matter how unconventional.

“That's why you were so sad all the time. You weren't just sad about the things that happened to you. You absorbed all the hurt that the world had.”

The way this book was narrated was like nothing I have ever read and it was the constant jumps of medium that really made this book. Yes, it was unconventional, but this author told the story the only way it could have been and it only affirmed her voice. This book encompasses child cruelty and the long-lasting effects it has going well into adulthood. How our early experiences morph our character, our insecurities and our outlook on life in general. How it manifests in our characteristics without us even realising and how hard it is to shift that nagging voice that digs deep into our psyche. No matter the experiences, they all matter, they all leave their mark, they imprint on your soul and more often than not, the damage is irreparable. Faceless men, alcohol, depression and mental illness are all explored with frank honesty, afraid of commitment, afraid to love. This was a unique read and one that I can highly recommend.

“I want to know something beautiful can grow from this. That opening up doesn't have to be the end of everything. That someone will see all of this ugly in me, and tell me where the beauty is.”

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