Published by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform on March 22, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
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Love is UNFORGIVABLE.
She wanted to forget her past.
He wanted to change the course of his future.
She was everything he never knew he needed.
He became her unexpected.
Everything was perfect.
Anyone who has ever read one of my reviews will notice that this one is vastly different. Generally, I’d go in depth about what I liked in relation to the characters, the plot, themes, personal experience, yada yada yada. With this story, I simply can’t do that. I can’t talk about any specifics of the plot without giving something away, and that would be a real shame. This is a story that you need to experience for yourself. I guarantee it’ll burrow itself deep inside and won’t let go.
I found a warning that the author shared on Goodreads and I also have to include it here. When I first saw it, I wasn’t too sure what to make of this warning but once I was finished the book it made perfect sense. Also, keep an eye on the title. It is rightfully called An Unforgivable Love Story. There will be angst. There will be hard times, but we also get to experience something that’s beautiful and truly unique. I’ve never read anything like this before.
This book will push your limits. I felt such a wide array of emotion at different times, I could never come up with one to stick with. There was even a significant amount of time when I was angry. No, not angry; I was livid. I wanted to put the book down then, I didn’t care anymore. I had a suspicion, but it turned out to go so much farther than what I expected. But, I trusted the author. She had a warning for this exact reason, so I kept going. I’m so, so glad I did. Please give this book a chance and when you think that you want no more, keep going. You need to read the entire thing to understand everything fully. Bottom line: it’s worth it.
“Because trust isn’t earned standing at the shoreline of the ocean. Trust is earned when you throw yourself into the darkest depths of the water. There, you are most vulnerable to all of your insecurities, imperfections and forgotten secrets. It’s all or nothing. There is no in between when it comes to trust. And after all that I’ve been through, this is the one man I want to hold onto my heart.”
Elyse was an awesome heroine. Her character was strong and determined. I loved that she had a backbone and stuck up for herself when needed but never in an abrasive or outlandish type of way. She was down to earth and always honest to not only others but herself. She’s exactly the type of character that’s needed in a book like this.
I was swooning over Simon so hard at times. When he says stuff like this, it’s hard not to.
“I want to be your obsession, Elyse.
I want to be the one who keeps you glowing all through the night until the sun comes up.
The one who doesn’t take your breath away, but rather gives you a reason to breathe.
The one you can still feel on your skin after hours of being apart.
I want to be your one and only.”
The best word I can come up with to describe this is unconventional, but in the best possible way. The synopsis is vague and you have no idea what to expect when you start. I cannot stress enough to be extremely careful in what reviews you read. Any semblance of a spoiler will ruin the entire thing. It’s not just the plot that you experience, but the way that B.L. weaves everything together with the character’s inner thoughts, fears, and how at times those can agree with or completely go against your own beliefs. If someone spoiled this book for me, first off I probably wouldn’t have read it – this needs to be unveiled gradually, not at once. But then even if I did, if I knew what to expect beforehand, I would have lost out on how it’s so beautifully done. Even something like skipping ahead to see what’s going on, don’t! You can’t find out what’s happening because you’ll then without a doubt start to form your own opinions without knowing all of the important information. If you’ve already formed your own opinions without letting her take you there, you’ll miss how Berry is colouring outside of the lines and reforming how romance can be done.
“My heart has betrayed my head. Everything I’ve ever known about relationships has been a lie. I can’t in good conscience put faith in my heart. And it doesn’t get more tragic than not being able to trust your own heart.”
This story is so incredibly powerful, I can’t even comprehend all of it at once. I can easily see myself still thinking about this a week from now, a month from now, even revisiting these thoughts again a year down the road. As a reader, we’re forced to think and confront these issues. What are your thoughts and beliefs? Trust me when I say it’s not cut and dry as you may have originally thought.
“And what is even more painful is the fact you have zero control over who you fall in love with. Right or wrong. Good or evil. Rhyme or reason. It doesn’t matter. Love is the most illogical and inexplicable thing mankind suffers through. That’s right, suffers through. You suffer your desires, your inhibitions, and the person you become when you’re with them … and without them. Love is an illness that deteriorates your heart, and right now I am suffering through my unequivocal love for the one man I shouldn’t.”
I’m a big believer that every story deserves to be told whether it’s traditional or not. While this isn’t your classic boy meets girl type of story, I cannot stress how real it was. This could happen to literally anyone, at anytime. It could happen to myself, a neighbour, a friend, that estranged cousin Mary who no one has heard from in years, but that’s exactly the point! Anytime you wanted to, you could pick up a book that follows some interesting characters through some difficulties and see them come out on the other side with their relationship stronger than ever. Everyone loves a Happily Ever After, right? But that’s not how life works! Sometimes things go wrong. Not every relationship in your life may be the right one for you. Sometimes no matter how much you love someone, you still have to put the work in to try and make it through. This is the story of Elyse and Simon, and how their relationship changed the course of their lives. Sometimes things don’t go as planned, sometimes life gets messy.
This is the first book by B.L. Berry that I’ve ever read and I was blown away with how beautiful and eloquently it was written. Berry took us to war and if words are her weapons, the arsenal was full. I don’t think I’ve ever highlighted as many quotes in a single book as I have while reading this. She has a way of making the words leap off the page and penetrate your mind and soul. There’s almost an understated quality to her writing. It’s when you finish and are looking back, looking between the lines that the detail really catches your attention. I applaud her for the direction that she took in this story. It was risky and extremely courageous, and I have that much more respect for her.
If you’re looking for sunshine and roses, you’ve obviously picked up the wrong book. This is gritty, raw, and too powerful to ignore. I urge everyone to give this a shot. Not only that, but make it to the end. This is not the book that you can quit half way through if you don’t like what’s happening. Once you start, you have to finish. Are you ready to have your belief system challenged?
What happens when your love story becomes unforgivable?
*An ARC was received in exchange for an honest review.