Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Review: Raven by Ashley Suzanne

If I would have known then what I know now.

If I would have known that having my heart broken at thirteen by my one and only friend, Garrett Rhodes, would never compare to the empty feeling at sixteen when I buried my mother.

If I would have known that changing schools in my senior year would throw all that back in my face.

Maybe … just maybe … I wouldn’t be in the hell storm I’m living in these days. Letting my past dictate my future, allowing the best of the best male MMA fighters bully me day in and day out and knowing no matter what I do, Garrett will always be the only man that understands me. I didn’t have to live this way. One day changed the course of my life forever.

Through all this mess, the one thing that I’ve found that keeps me centered … martial arts. And I’m damn good. If only someone would give me a chance to prove my worth.

All I can do now is make the best of it and try to not let the fight consume me.

Or has it already?

5 Fantastic Stars!!
Review by Allison East
So this is my first Ashley Suzanne book *ducks and hides in the corner* and certainly won't be my last. It was fantastically written, with well developed characters. And it had a lot of my "criteria" for a five star!
1-  Steamy- check and check! Rian and Garrett's story is hot, hot hot!

2- Emotional- again, totally the feels- I mean all the feels- and I couldn't even begin to start another book right after this one

3-Character development- nailed this on the head, not only did they both start out kind of wonky teenagers, but over the course of the story, and because of their lives- it started to change into this amazing ending. Strong, loving, beautiful characters.

4- Love lost, and love found- one of my FAVE books to read is when the H/h find each other  when they are young, and fall madly, deeply in love with one another, and something irrevocably tears them apart, like in Raven, but then miraculously, they find each other again!

5-NO CLIFFHANGER, not that itâ's a deal breaker when I read a book obviously, but it makes me happy when a story I read comes full circle and you aren't left hanging.

6-And finally- HEA, all the crazy ups and downs and roller coasters that this book has, praise Jesus, Rian and Garrett get their happily ever after!

Rian has a serious case of bad luck. It wasn't always that way- when she was younger, and her mom was single and on her own- she lived a carefree existence, going along with her mom's hippie lifestyle- and it was a good life. She also meets a really great friend-Garrett when she was 13, only to get him ripped away from her when his Army dad moves away to a different part of Kentucky (I love that this is set in Kentucky by the way, because I'm from there!)
Then the hits just keep on coming, her mother marries Tom, everything changes, the light and sparkle in Rian's mom's eyes just dwindles and disappears all together. Four years later something really bad happens between Tom and Rian forcing her mother's hand- and the consequences are devastating for Rian. 

"Sometimes, you have to go through the worst to get to the best." 

After yet another shocking event happens to her family, Rian is swept away to Corbin, Kentucky from Lexington- and on the first day of school she meets Garrett again! And boy how he has grown. Sigh, like the perfect book boyfriend for sure.

After they date a little while- Garrett confesses to Rian that he has made a decision that will affect both their lives. Rian is obviously crushed but will not let that ruin what is left of their time together.

"We're the ones who are gonna make it- we're forever."

Then like Lemony Snicket and the series of unfortunate events- another one befalls Rian, and she looks to Garrett, who is away. She receives a letter from him stating he will be gone another six months, and almost a little bit selfishly flees Corbin and moves back home ready to start her life over, alone, much like a raven would.
Four years pass again, and we see more changes- changes in Rian for sure. Great developemental changes- absolutely. And I love the direction the novel shifted in from there. Fantastic writing again. About Rian's new life alone, and how she is doing. And the way Garrett comes back into her life and how it has changed him (can I say Alpha male, panty melting hottie???)

You will not regret reading this book, you need to do so ASAP, and then thank me later after you are finished. I don't lie with the five stars, they are golden!



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