Thoughts. I’ve got SO MANY thoughts about this book. There’s a lot that I loved about it, from the focus on mental health and self-worth to the compassionate, steadfast hero. I loved the unique feel and the unpredictable storyline. But the romance suffered along the way. Two-thirds of the way into the book, I realized the issue: I had no idea why Cut was interested in Cheyenne, other than an instant desire and some great sex. It’s so focused on the mental health aspect that these two don’t talk about ANYTHING else. I can totally get behind a storyline where the hero falls for a girl and her health is irrelevant, but… that’s not what this is.
The story follows Cheyenne, a woman who has been let down time and time again (lots of triggers here). Her mother was an addict during pregnancy, and that’s had a huge impact on Cheyenne’s life in a variety of ways. She’s turned her life into something that resembles normal these days, but back in high school there was one guy that helped Cheyenne get through the day… not that he ever knew she existed. When Cheyenne and Cut see each other face-to-face for the first time as adults, there’s an instant connection there. But Cut means more to Cheyenne than he could ever realize, and there’s no way she wants to bring him into her life.
Let’s talk about the good for a minute – because there is a lot of it. This felt so unique, and I’ve definitely never read a love story where the heroine seems to have so much going against her. I loved that Cut could handle it. While there’s all kinds of drama in the actual story, I appreciated that there wasn’t a ton between the two of them. Though… that’s also part of the problem. There wasn’t much between them other than push/pull, attraction, and support. They get together VERY early in the story, and yet they don’t spend much time on the page together at all. I felt shortchanged by the first steamy scene, because it’s omitted almost entirely. We don’t even see their first kiss – that is, if they had one during their first hookup. I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t, given the direction it was taking. That all leads to a disconnect from the romance, so I couldn’t completely get into it. I liked so many elements of this and loved the risks taken, but there was also a lot that just didn’t work. I received an early copy and am voluntarily leaving a review of this complicated romance.
Cutler Ryder was everything I wasn’t.
He was the hockey star. I was an outcast.
He was best friends with my stepbrother, that same stepbrother who hated me.
His two parents loved him. My mom was a junkie. My dad barely knew me.
I got my life together.
Cut went onto NHL stardom.
Then there was a text.
I was drinking.
There was a party.
Cut was there…
I loved Cutler Ryder since the first moment I saw him.
The only problem? He never knew I existed.
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About the Author:
Tijan is a New York Times Bestselling author that writes suspenseful and unpredictable novels. Her characters are strong, intense, and gut-wrenchingly real with a little bit of sass on the side. Tijan began writing later in life and once she started, she was hooked. She’s written multi-bestsellers including the Carter Reed Series, the Fallen Crest Series, and the Broken and Screwed Series among others. She is currently writing a new YA series along with so many more from north Minnesota where she lives with a man she couldn’t be without and an English Cocker she adores.
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