18 September 2014

Irreparably Broken Tour Stop!

Madison Kennedy has always seen herself as damaged goods. Her ex-boyfriend, Richard, told her on a daily basis that she was worthless. After a tumultuous three year relationship, Maddie finally decided to leave behind the bruises and hurtful words only to find herself scared and alone. Five years have passed, and it still seems like yesterday. 

Cole Walker grew up in a household where it was okay to hit. His father used him, his mother, and sister as punching bags when he didn’t get his way. Cole learned early on that life wasn’t always fair. Aside from his best friend, Wes, no one knew his deepest secrets. He thought he’d never escape the nightmare until one day he decided to fight back. 

After several chance encounters, Cole and Maddie realize they have more in common than either one could have guessed, but both are afraid that if they open up they’ll scare the other away. Can two broken individuals find peace with each other? Can love heal a cracked soul? Will Cole’s secret past ultimately drive Maddie away?

The synopsis for this book is rather clear what the story of Maddie and Cole is about so I will focus this review on why I gave it a five star rating.  While the story line is rather predictable and not original, let’s face it with so many authors out there, original ideas are very rare, in this case the way the author presented this story is what is unique and the reason for the high ratings. 
When dealing with such a sensitive subject as domestic violence and the recovery from such events, I feel there is a very fine line between victim and survivor and many times I never feel the character rarely realistically crosses that line. Most often the woman finds another man to fall in love with and he becomes her escape and rescuer, but not in this book.   What this author did with Maddie is she created a strong woman who was involved in a relationship with Richard that turned violent.  She had no warnings till the first hit happened but she refused to accept the abuse at a point and she left.  With a career and the ability to support herself, she went one step farther and participated in support groups for other survivors.  This alone was enough for me to say the author was giving great respect to the issue and survivors, she was not using it as just a subject for a book. Then she soared into the five star category with the Cole and the secondary characters involved. Another bonus was Maddie still continued her life in the same neighborhood her abuser lived in.  She didn’t run and hide.  There was no hiding in another state or country, she walked the same sidewalks as he did, and she bought drinks at the same locations he would go to.  Yes she looked over her shoulder and she would find herself shaking in fear that he would show up, but the author wrote it in a way that we could feel it and soak in Maddie’s courage. 
Cole was such a misunderstood soul but I was so glad to see he knew he was worth going after Maddie.  I know that sounds like a crazy statement but here is the deal.  He has his own demons yet he was still willing to seek his happiness while trying to heal Maddie the best he could.  The author once again let the reader see him as a survivor who had been shattered and forced into doing things he would never want to do, but he didn’t let that hold him back from trusting in love and believing he had something positive to offer Maddie.  It was clear his life as a child had damaged him but the author made it clear that as a man life had not destroyed Cole.  He still believed in the beauty of things and wanted to share that with her.
If I were basing this rating on story alone it would have easily been a four star, but with the balancing act that author did in presenting this topic with respect, grace and courage and the depth of characters she created, I had no choice but give it a five.  Now if I could give it a higher rating I would with that cliff hanger.  I am a reader who LOVES cliff hangers and the suspense of waiting for the next book and the author didn’t disappoint me here.  She wrote a final page that had me screaming and sobbing.  I finished this book three days ago and I still think about Maddie and Cole often, the story became part of my heart and I am dying to know what happens next.  I highly recommend this book.  
“Hey, no sleeping yet,” Cole nudged me as we turned into the parking lot of his building. It had only been a few hours since I’d been here, but it felt like a lifetime. “Let’s get you upstairs and into something more comfortable.”
“I don’t have anything here…what would I change into?” I turned to glance at him. He had a smirk firmly in place as he snickered, “Exactly!”
“Cole!” I gasped.
“What?” he rolled his eyes before turning to face me completely. “You’re beautiful,” he lifted his arms. “Why is it so hard for you to think that I don’t enjoy you naked?”
I could feel my face heating, and I began twisting my hands together in my lap. Cole grunted slightly as he shoved open his door and rounded the front appearing on my side before I had a chance to react.
“I guess…” I trailed off.
“What?” he reached for my hand to help me out and then tucked me into his side as he led me to the door. “What’s going on in there?” he pointed to my head. “Tell me…please?”
“Richard always said I was a lousy girlfriend,” I let the words fly out of my mouth without taking a breath. I avoided looking at him, worried at what I might see when I did.
He paused with his hand on the door knob as he quickly shook his head, “That asshole didn’t know what he was talking about.” He quickly unlocked the door, and tugged me in behind him before pressing me into the wall, and covering me with his body. “You are the sexiest thing alive, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself last night. Don’t you ever question your abilities when it comes to fucking. You’re brilliant…you hear me. Fucking brilliant, and I want an encore right now.”
As his lips pressed to mine in a deep kiss, his palms slid around my middle and dipped into the back out my scrub pants cupping my rear. He began kneading the soft flesh as he pulled me into him. “Oh god I want you,” he groaned as he broke the kiss. “Right now!” He yanked his hands out, and gripped my top in the process, tossing is over my head. Our mouths crashed back together before we both fumbled with each other’s pants. He was wearing a pair of athletic shorts, and as soon as I loosened the drawstring, they easily slid over his hips. His erection sprung free pointing directly where it wanted to be, and I shivered in anticipation. “So beautiful,” he murmured as his mouth moved to run across my throat. He rolled his hips forward, rubbing his cock through the wetness that was slowly leaking down my thigh. “And so ready,” he growl as a finger pushed into me.

Amazon best-selling author of the Second Chances series and the Shattered Trilogy, Heather D’Agostino writes contemporary and new adult romance set in Boston, New York, and North Carolina. Heather has always enjoyed creative writing, but never pursued it as a career option. Born and raised in Harrisburg, NC she received a BA in Elementary Education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. After teaching for six years, she decided to leave the profession to be a stay-at-home mom. After finding the world of Fan Fiction, Heather decided to “get her feet wet” in the literary world. With much encouragement and inspiration from the Fan Fiction world, she made the decision to publish her work. Heather prides herself in the fact that her books have real life situations with believable characters.
These characters could be your best friend or your next door neighbor. Her first book, Unbreak Me, has been welcomed with open arms into the self-published community giving her the encouragement needed to continue to pursue this dream. Heather currently lives in Syracuse, NY with her husband, two children, two dogs, and three cats. She enjoys spending time with her family, watching sports, and playing chauffeur for all her children’s activities.


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