Hello, my lovelies!
It has now become my turn on the blog tour of this truly amazing story.
At the end of this post, there is a tour wide giveaway.
A new adult story of Love. Sex. Addiction. Blackmail. And Power…Some say love can be an addiction. Others say it’s the thing that makes life worth living. Let me tell you everything I know about love…Love isn’t patient, love isn’t kind. Love is a game, a chase. A thrill. Love is wild and war-like, and every man and woman must fight for themselves. At least that’s how it was for me. A high-priced virgin call girl by the time I started college, I was addicted to love and to sex. Even though I’ve never had either. I controlled love, played it, and held the world in the palm of my hands. Then I fell down from those highs, and I’m being blackmailed for all my mistakes, forced to keep secrets from everyone, except the only guy I don’t regret.
With all the other women, I knew what they were. They were temporary. They were pills, they were bottles, they took away all the pain, and numbed the awful memories that wore down my ragged, wasted heart. Until I met Harley. She’s the only girl I ever missed when she walked away. But now she’s back in my life, every day, and there are no guarantees for us, especially since I don’t know how to tell her my secrets. What happened to my family. All I know is she’s the closest I’ve ever come to something real, and I want to feel every second of it.
How can you love with no regrets when regret is all you know?
ARC received by the author in exchange for an honest review.
I am fast becoming a huge fan of Lauren Blakely’s even though this is only the second book of hers that I have read. She has a way of making you invested in her stories from page one and this book is no different. But, as I have said before, be warned: this is not like her other books so do not expect it to be.
How can you be a virgin call girl addicted to sex and love? To tell you the truth, I was a bit sceptical about this and I am sure I am not the only one. But then, the more I got to know Harley, the heroine, my scepticism dwindled until it became nonexistent.
Harley is definitely a product of her upbringing: her father left when she was very little and after her mother, Barbara, got back on her feet, she molded Harley into becoming her friend, not her daughter. It was really heartbreaking reading the passages about Harley’s mother and some violent feelings arose in me every time she did or said something that no daughter needs to know about her mother. I found it particularly difficult getting to know how she had no qualms about Harley hearing about her sexcapades. And it really makes you wonder how such a smart woman – an award-winning journalist, nonetheless – cannot see how toxic an environment this is for one’s child. It brought me close to being sick to my stomach, actually, and it definitely made me understand Harley’s actions so much better.
“I am cracked and brittle too, hardened by all the things I saw, and mostly all the things I heard over the years.” (Harley)
Harley met her former pimp, Cam, through her mother, actually. Now, here is a character that is peculiar, to say the least. The first word that comes to mind is “sleazy”. Then, as you read the book, the second word is “interesting”. And finally, you end up thinking “likeable”, which is very strange, I know. But that is how I felt while reading Harley’s story. When she describes how she was allowed to make up her own set of rules, and that Cam had no problems with that, it is no wonder why Harley stayed in that life for years.
The only reason Harley is no longer a call girl is the fact that she is being blackmailed – how I hated that woman, Miranda! She is forcing Harley to write a book about her “exploits” – called “Memoirs Of Teenage Sex Addict” – and makes her go to SLAA (“Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous”) in order to change her ways. This is actually a blessing in disguise because that is where she connects with a young man, Trey, which she has met once before and cannot stop thinking about. He makes her feel things she has never felt before, but because of her past, she is afraid to trust them.
Trey is, like Harley, a product of his upbringing, but instead of too much openness, his home was cloaked in silence. I dare you to NOT feel anything while getting to know what Trey hides in his soul – his story made me cry, it was so heartbreaking. He is also going to the meetings in the SLAA, but for an entirely different reason: his problems stem from mindless sex with older women. He has never had a girlfriend, never even had sex with a girl his own age.
What more can I tell you about Harley and Trey without giving the story away? I will not go into further details about what takes place, because you really need to read the book and make up your own mind about it. But what I CAN tell you is that this book is about how two damaged souls can find each other in a time of pure darkness, and how they finally let go of their pasts and search for a better future together. And the way Trey sees Harley will definitely make you swoon:
“You belong to a stained glass window in an abandoned building. You belong to the flower in the junkyard. You belong to the beach that you want to see. Most of all, you belong to the ugly beautiful. You belong to this nessy, crazy, brave and honest love.” (Trey)
To sum up: like I wrote in the beginning of my review, this is not like Miss Blakely’s other books. For me, there are no laugh-out-loud moments, but it WILL make you sigh and smile. I have already told you that it made me cry, and I also felt lots of anger while reading. Further, it is an intense romance that definitely deals with some difficult subject matters. Finally, it is such a beautiful love story that does not end with this book – and yes, there is kind of a cliffhanger in the end, but nothing you will not be able to handle.
Thank you, Miss Blakely, for finally giving us Harley and Trey’s love story. I know that you started writing it a long time ago and I am so pleased that you did not keep it under lock and key. I, for one, am thrilled that this book is not the end of this couple’s journey. And I wholeheartedly believe in this:
“Now I know. I get it. I understand. This is love. It’s not a game. It’s not a razor’s edge. It’s not a transaction. The poets are right. The dreamers are right. The lovers are right. This isn’t nothing. This is everything.” (Harley)
heart, and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers! Her novels include Caught Up In Us, Pretending He’s Mine, Playing With Her Heart, Trophy Husband, and Far Too Tempting. On November 21, she’ll release the edgy new adult novel THE THRILL OF IT. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.