Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Review: Love After Pain by Torrie Robles

I didn’t want to fall in love. Love wasn’t included in the plan I had laid out for myself. My plan was simple; go to school, graduate and become the most well-known corporate law attorney on the west coast. I had it all right in the palm of my hand until the day I heard her voice, saw her smile, and fell in love with the most gorgeous set of emerald eyes. 

Love hits you like a Mac truck and you’re done for. Out of nowhere, you meet the person you can’t see living your life without. Then an actual Mac truck hits you and rips your love away, taking your life right along with it. One moment she was there, the next I was left with my daughter and my newborn son. My daughter will only know her mother by the memories in her young mind and my son? He will never know her. He will never feel what’s it’s like to have the love of his mother because she was dead before he took his first breath. 

My love for my wife was replaced by anger. Anger that this was my life, anger that my children will grow up without her, anger that I asked her to join me the first day I met her, when I should have just sent her away. If I had sent her away, if I had kept to my plan, then she'd still be alive. She would be able to watch her own children grow, but I didn’t and now she’s gone. 

They say I'll move on. They say there's love after the pain. They say I'll learn to love again, but I can’t. I can’t give my heart to someone else when my wife took it with her.

4.5 Star Review by Jen Skewes

Wow! What a beautiful and emotional story.  My emotions were all over the place with this one and I loved every minute of it.   I was completely sucked in from the first page and did not want to let go.  I wanted to ignore everyone and everything around me and just get lost in this book. 

David never planned on having a life that included a wife and children.  His career was everything to him.  But that all changed when he met Kate.  She was his world.  She made him a better person.  Life with Kate, his daughter and their unborn son was perfect.  Until it was all shattered in one instant.  David lost Kate in a horrible accident leaving him a widow and single father to a seven year old girl and his new born son Brody.  David is not sure how to move on without Kate in his life.  He knows that his children need him but he doesn’t know how to live his life without the one woman to ever have his heart.

Olivia Conrad is a spitfire of a woman.  She comes into David’s life at the perfect time.  She wants to help him in any way that she can.  She has been through her own hell and knows better than anyone what David is going through.  There is certainly chemistry between David and Olivia but David is struggling with his feelings.  There is a war going on between his mind and his heart and as the reader you are not sure which one is going to win.  His family wants him to move on and encourages him to find love again. Getting out of bed, showering and shaving is hard enough, so how do you move on from such a loss?  Can David truly move on and open his heart up to another woman?  Will these two be able to heal each other?

You need to experience it on your own and feel with these characters.  And trust me you will feel it all.  I had so many emotions going through me.  At times I honestly felt a bit of heartache for Kate or should I say her memory.    Yes I know she wasn’t the main characters but her and her memory are a big part of this story.  I think I felt that guilt and pain with David. I understood him and his feelings because I felt it as well.

My heart just broke for David and his daughter.  The moments he spent with her remembering his wife will break you.  I cannot imagine dealing with a loss as big as losing your spouse but when you have two children who also lost their mother I think it just makes the pain that much harder.  I felt for him.  I felt his pain, his anger, and his guilt.  I wanted to be able to hold him and hug him and tell him it was going to be ok.  But I also wanted him to be able to move on, to be able to laugh and smile again.  

And then there is Olivia who I loved but had a hard time with in the beginning.  She is a bit feisty and I thought maybe she pushed too hard at times.  But when you hear her story you realize that she is a girl who is falling in love with a man who is dealing with a loss that is all too familiar to her.  She knows better than anyone what he is going through.  I loved her and how much she cared for his children.

All these feelings that I felt for these three characters is what caused so many emotions.  Torrie Robles may me feel it all.  But she also made me think a lot while reading this book.   I kept asking myself the questions throughout this book.  If it was me would I be ok with my husband moving on?  And then I wondered or feared what if he found someone that he loved more than me, or took care of him better than I could? It sounds crazy I know but this is what went through my head.  And then I realized that you know what, that is not what is should be about.  It is about the spouse and the children.  David was afraid of moving on and I understand why.  But he needed to realize that this should be about him and his kids.  What makes them happy.  Kate will always be the love of his life, his first love. She will always be a part of him and hold a special place in his heart.  She gave him two beautiful gifts and through his kids she will always be a part of them.  And this is exactly what this story is about.  Accepting what has happened and try to move on.  Because David and those kids deserve to be loved and taken care of.  

This is David’s journey to accepting his loss and being able to move on.  It is about loss, love, the stages of grief, moving on and opening up your heart again.  It is emotional, heart breaking and beautiful all in one.  While your heart will break more than once, don’t worry because the pieces will be put back together in the end.  The road to happiness for David and Olivia was not an easy one by any means at all.  It was filled with conflict, and struggles and a lot of emotions.  But in the end you will be left smiling and happy.  You know I have to say that there were moments when this felt like a tough read for me.  Wondering how quickly he would move on and trying to decide what is the right amount of time before one does love again.  But Torrie Robles did an amazing job with the pace of this story.  It never felt rushed.  It just felt real.  

The only reason why this did not get a 5 star from me was because I needed to feel their connection a little more in the beginning.  Don’t get me wrong I wanted these two together.  But in the beginning I did not feel the connection as much as I wanted to.  But in the end, that moment when these two finally connect in the way I was hoping for, my God it was beautiful and it made me love Olivia even more.  You will understand why when you read this book, but it was that moment when it all just clicked for me and came together.  It was the moment when you said “Yes” this is how it should be.  I saw how remarkable of a woman Olivia truly is and how much she loved and wanted to care for Divd and his children.  What an amazing story!!  Have tissues handy because you will need them.  This is the first book that I have read by this author and it will certainly not be the last. 

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