Friday, August 9, 2013

Review and Giveaway: Where I End and You Begin by Andra Brynn

In Japan, they say there’s a red thread of fate that binds people who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstance. It may tangle, it may knot, it may stretch or fray, but it will never break. It is a future as indelible as the past.

I hope that isn't true. I pity anyone destined to meet me.


For Bianca Ray, the past is always catching up, one way or another. Now in her third semester at college, it's doing it again. Too much drinking has led to plummeting grades and rising absences, putting her scholarships in peril. When she makes it clear that she needs help—all over the floor of her history class—she’s given one last chance to shape up: seek therapy and bring her grades up by the end of the semester, or she’s out.

Enter Catholic seminarian Daniel McGuire. The last thing Bianca wants is an aspiring priest to counsel her on how to live her life, but the handsome graduate student is different from the holy rollers she fled from at home. Gentle and unobtrusive, he helps her pick up the pieces and find a new way to live: not running from the past, but facing it head on.

But opening up her heart to release the pain means that something else can come in. As Bianca and Daniel grow closer, their relationship moves onto dangerous ground and the fragile courage Bianca has built up threatens to fail her. Can she exorcise the ghosts of her past, or will they catch hold and drag her down where not even Daniel can reach her?

4.5 Star Review by Jen Hagen

You know that feeling that you get after reading a book and you can’t stop thinking about the story? How one character can continue on with you even after the story is complete?  That’s how I am today.  Daniel is that character for me…he’s still hanging around in my head making me smile at how he was able to help change one girl’s destructive path and in the process help himself see if the road he’s on is the correct one.   

Bianca is a 19-year-old college sophomore who has been placed on academic probation and is in danger of losing her full-ride scholarship.  If she loses this, she will be forced to return home…a place where she was escaping.  Bianca hides behind alcohol.  She spends most of her time drinking and with the drinking comes the no-name one-night stands.  She just wants to be loved for the briefest of moments and she finds that in the arms of strangers.  She attends classes either hungover or still drunk.   

“I don’t have a problem. I have a coping mechanism. It’s not my fault I need to cope so badly.” 

On one particular day, the day that will inevitably change her life, she attends one of her classes after a night of consuming large amounts of alcohol, plus she had some wine before the class started.  She isn’t in any condition to be in class.  A graduate student is leading the class today and he sees firsthand how much alcohol she has consumed. 

“I look like a hobo that accidentally wandered on campus, and given how much I’ve had to drink in the past twelve hours, I probably smell like one, too. A prickling sensation scratches my throat. He frowns down at me. “Are you all right?” he asks. And I try to shake my head but the movement is too much. The world splashes and then there is wine in my mouth and it’s all over. I lean to the side and puke all over the floor.” 

The graduate student is 24-year-old Daniel.  Daniel wants to help her but in the process he has just committed her to academic probation and counseling.  In order to alleviate his feelings of guilt, he offers his assistance in counseling since he has some background experience with it.  One night Bianca finds herself needing help when caught in a situation and the only person she thinks to call is Daniel.  Daniel wants to keep her occupied and keep her thoughts away from taking a drink of alcohol so he quickly becomes her friend and is by her side helping her study to get her grades back up.  Bianca is glad to have his friendship and is relieved to find out that there is no pressure to have sex with him because he is studying to become a priest.  (Somehow I must have glanced over that in the description of the book and was completely stunned).   

Daniel has doubt, Bianca has fears.  Maybe they can heal each other.

“Before there was you, I was in a fog, not knowing which way to go. And then there was you, and you burned it all away.”

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1 comment:

  1. Amazing book. A definite recommend for everyone!


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