5+ Dove Worthy CROWNS
Ahh! OH MY GOD!!! I absolutely loved this book. It is a hide behind my shirt, I can’t finish, but oh, how I must finish this book type of story. I, truly and completely, loved this book!
These characters are fantastic. Dash is the older brother of Amelia’s best friend, Lexi, and her seemingly unrequited crush. When readers really get to meet him, as well as other flashbacks, reveal a sadder and more conflicted character. Even as an adult, Dash has moments of despair that flash behind his eyes. It is clear he has feelings for Amelia, but there always seems to be something holding him back, even as an adult. He is really such a original and lovable hero, readers yearn for his happiness and for him to work past what is weighing him down so that he can grasp his own happiness with Ammy. Amelia, the heroine, has been hurt and damaged by her past with Dash. She lacks the ability to fully trust others, but her pull to Dash is too hard to resist, and really, readers can’t blame her for that. Additionally, Amelia is good to her core. Kind, compassionate, understanding, forgiving, she has one of the biggest hearts I can recall in a heroine. Even with these core attributes, Ella James never portrays her as a pushover or as one succumbing to Dash. It is always her choice and what she desires and craves. These two, from the moment they are young, are meant for each other, and it is real and complementary.
The chemistry between these two is completely natural. When they are young, it is emotional and supportive. They talk, they listen, and they understand each other. When it becomes physical, it is clear it is what they both crave and desire, but the result hurts not only the characters but the readers. They feel that weight of disappointment and pain the characters feel, only serving to make us want their reconciliation, even if it is years later. When they reconnect as adults, it is tenuous at first, but they cannot resist the draw. Even with their passion igniting, there is still this secret, this unknown past weighing them down.
This plot absolutely had me on the edge of my seat. The flashbacks allow the readers to develop an allegiance to the characters and their romance, while also serving the purpose of setting up the secret that will eventually explode. When this the bomb drops, I literally gasped. As soon as the chapter started, I knew what was coming, and I didn’t want to keep reading because I knew the destruction it would cause, but I also couldn’t stop. I couldn’t walk away. I had to see how the climax of the story would play out, and how Dash and Ammy would be affected by the fall out. Ella James doesn’t shy away from the effects of their past, but she explains the past in a way that makes the readers sympathetic to both characters, allowing readers to forgive the character and desire for them to reconcile. The HEA she provides for her characters is absolute perfection, and it is well earned by the characters.
This is one of those stories that I never want to end. I want to see beyond the epilogue, far into their future. I need to continue to see the happiness of these characters who I have come to adore and who deserve a lifetime of peace and love. It is a phenomenal read, and it will be a favorite of 2017!
ARC received in exchange for an honest review.
The boy next door. That’s what he was. Dash Frasier—my hero from the day we met, when I was six and he was nine. His sister was my best friend, the three of us one happy crew. Then one sweaty summer night changed everything.
No one understood me like Dash. No one made me feel so loved. That’s why, when he skipped town, it wrecked me.
Now I’m older. Wiser. I’ve just snagged my dream job, writing at a film studio. The lead animator on my project? You guessed it.
He’s not the boy next door. Not anymore.
I’m guarding my heart this time.
But Dash has secrets that could break us both.
Ella James is the USA Today bestselling author of sixteen teen and adult love stories. She’s an angst-a-holic who loves exploring difficult situations and the emotions of the people caught up in them. Also, smut. But always, always romance.
Ella’s obsessions include vanilla cream soda, hiking, other weird, crunchy things like rock collecting, and the antics of her three little monsters.
To find out more about her projects, follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ellajamesbooks, tweet her at author_ellaj or follow her on Instagram (authorellajames).
Interested in the foreign rights for one of Ella’s books? Contact her agent, Rebecca Friedman, at email@example.com.