I wanted to hate this book. I wanted to kick and scream and throw a tantrum that rivals my 2 year old when she has really put some effort into it… but I couldn’t. I begrudgingly loved it with all its angst, heaviness, addiction, death, cynicism, sadness, and broken love.
Why did I wanna hate it? Well, it doesn’t have a HEA or HFN that I have come to expect in romance. That’s usually a hard limit for me when choosing a book. But instead, I put on my big girl panties, grabbed a snuggie, some tissues and kept on going.
I feel like I got dragged through the mud which turned out to be quicksand that became a giant sink hole. This isn’t a story for the faint of heart. This one breaks your heart but it’s written in a way that makes it kind of ok. You just know it’s gonna hurt. And it absolutely fucking does.
The two “main characters” are Lucas and Chris. However, this isn’t a traditional romance and their group of friends held just as big of a part as Lucas and Chris. More on that later.
got away ran away from their small town and all its “empty shells” of people. He ran away to college and during his freshman year he isolated himself from his family and life long best friends. This story starts when his parents pick him up from his dorm room for summer break. Being back home means he is thrust back into friendships that he was ignoring. One of his best friends is getting married and that is where Lucas meets Chris, the best man. Chris is the Tigger to Lucas’ Eeyore. Chris breathes life into everything including the extremely cynical-negative-Nancy, Lucas. Chris is the diamond in the rough for Lucas.
This doesn’t turn into the status quo best man romance where they hook up with a sexfest and then can’t live without each other. Nope. Not even close. We get to follow this group of BFFs as they navigate unrequited love, guilt, friendship, relationships and the path to self acceptance and happiness.
As I said before, I wouldn’t call this a romance. Sure, there are romantic relationships and even love with all the other issues that are happening within the group of MCs. But, it’s more about acceptance and finding happiness within yourself, your life and to become a better person for those around you. It’s knowing that life can suck. Majorly. But at the end of the day, you still have your dysfunctional tribe and yourself. It’s up to you what you do with it.
I really really enjoyed this book and the writing style. As I said, it’s a heavy book with depressing subject matter. The author was able to take all of that sadness and write it in a way that when we walk away, even without a HEA/HFN, we are still left with bittersweet hope.
“Maybe I knew nothing of love—not what it was, what it meant to be in it, or what to do when you were—but maybe, just maybe, it meant finding a boy who only smiled and then holding his hand when he frowned.”
Copy provided from publisher in exchange for an honest review.