Everything I Left Unsaid by M. O'Keefe
Series: Everything I Left Unsaid #1
Published by Bantam
Published on October 13th 2015
Genres: Adult Contemporary, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
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Fans of Jodi Ellen Malpas, K. Bromberg, and Joanna Wylde will be unable to resist this sexy, deeply intimate tale of a woman running from her past, and the darkly mysterious man who sets her free.
I didn’t think answering someone else’s cellphone would change my life. But the stranger with the low, deep voice on the other end of the line tempted me, awakened my body, set me on fire. He was looking for someone else. Instead he found me.
And I found a hot, secret world where I felt alive for the first time.
His name was Dylan, and, strangely, he made me feel safe. Desired. Compelled. Every dark thing he asked me to do, I did. Without question. I longed to meet him, but we were both keeping secrets. And mine were dangerous. If I took the first step, if I got closer to Dylan—emotionally, physically—then I wouldn’t be hiding anymore. I would be exposed, with nothing left to surrender but the truth. And my truth could hurt us both.
“Pleasure and pain. Light and dark. Guilt and ecstasy. Grief and happiness.”
5 “Inevitable” stars
A chemistry-filled, intense love story featuring a young woman claiming her life back and a strong but broken enigmatic hero, this book is highly sensual and a little bit dark, but clever and totally unique! The writing is emotive and engaging, and I was enthralled from start to finish. I absolutely loved it.
Annie is on the run from an abusive husband… I know, I know, this story has been done before, but wait, it gets better …. Setting up residence in a run-down trailer park, Annie sets about creating a quiet life and rediscovering herself after suffering almost her whole life under the controlling thumb of first her mother, and then her husband. She finds work, starts reading again (thoroughly enjoying Fifty Shades, hehehe), and rediscovers her love of the small things.
And then there’s Dylan.
On her first day in her new home, a cell phone rings. It’s not Annie’s phone, but in a move that will change her life, she answers it anyway. It’s a man named Dylan, who is looking for the person who last lived in her trailer. He’s been paying the people that have previously lived there to keep an eye on her mysterious neighbour, Ben. But their brief conversation turns into something so much more.
Annie and Dylan share an immediate and intense connection. His voice does things to her, she feels safe with him, truly desired for the first time in her life, and before long things turn steamy.
“I’ve never been wild.”
“You want to be, don’t you? That’s why you’re calling me.?”
“Yeah, I guess…maybe…”
“Yes or no. There’s no one else here to hear you and I ain’t judging.”
“Yes. Yes, I’d like to be wild.”
“I’m the fucking luckiest man on the planet tonight. The only thing I’m going to do is help you come.”
Annie discovers a whole new side of herself with Dylan – a part of herself that she has kept hidden and hasn’t ever explored. It’s hot, sensual, and a little bit dirty. And more than just phone sex, Dylan pushes Annie to reach beyond her limits, to do things she’s always dreamed of, and she starts to blossom as he helps her gain confidence in herself as Dylan brings her back to life.
She was scared, but she was trying; in order to get what she wanted she was pushing past her own bullshit fears and being brave. In her voice, he could hear every dark and forbidden thing she craved. And he wanted to give it to her. Everything she wanted and the things she didn’t know to want, yet.
How far would she go?
She wanted dark? He had all the dark. All of it. And he’d show her every midnight corner of it.
But it’s all still over the phone, and very much in the present. Annie hasn’t told Dylan about her life, and Dylan tells her nothing about himself other than warning her not to romanticise what they have. But each conversation draws them closer and closer, until the inevitable happens.
“It’s a seduction, Annie. It’s about want. Not need.”
“You’ve already seduced me,” she whispered. “All I want is you.”
I don’t want to go too much into the storyline because the way it all unfolds is perfect, and I want others to be able to dive in and experience it all just like I did, but OMG! This may be a ‘quiet’ book – there’s not really a lot of action, and the pacing is slow and steady – but I was still glued to every page. Annie’s journey is addictive, the little glimpses that we get of Dylan have me desperate to know more, and with some great twists thrown in along the way, the intensity that O’Keefe is able to create makes this an amazing read!
Annie is a wonderful character! She’s inexperienced and sheltered, but she never comes off as being weak or annoying. I loved watching her find her way and discover who she is. Dylan is almost her total opposite – confident and experienced, but he is a scarred man with a dark past, and he has no intention of letting anybody get close.
Written in dual POV, the chemistry between Annie and Dylan is absolutely electric. What they have together is seriously hot and incredibly intense but they joke and have fun as well, and I adored the development of their ‘relationship’. But they are both keeping secrets from each other, and with their pasts still having such a huge hold over them, they have a lot that they need to work through – both individually, and in order to have any chance of something more between them.
We were editors of our own selves, revealing only what we wanted to show. Being only what served us best.
Trust was an enormous act of faith.
And faith…God, faith was hard.
This is the first book of a duet and yes, it ends on a cliffhanger. Parts of the story finish really well, and honestly, even without the cliffhanger ending, I would have been grabbing for the next book as soon as it became available just to see how the rest of the story plays out. But O’Keefe throws in an ending which is expected, but still gets the heart pumping, and again I’m keen for resolution.
I loved this story. It’s fantastically written with a unique angle and I read it in a day, unable to put it down. I can’t wait to see how it’s all going to end.
An Advanced Reader Copy was generously provided in exchange for an honest review.