Come to Me Softly by A.L. Jackson
Series: Closer to You #2
Published by NAL
Published on June 24th, 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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From the New York Times bestselling author of Come to Me Quietly comes a scorching new adult romance in the Closer to You series.
A second chance at life…
A second chance at love…
Jared Holt never thought he deserved either—until he found both in the arms of Aly Moore. Aly has loved Jared for as long as she can remember, and she’s more than ready for the future they’re making together. But Jared can’t help remembering his own family. And he’ll never forgive himself for what happened to them. How can he allow himself the very happiness he once destroyed?
To live a life worthy of Aly, Jared knows he has to stop running and finally put his past to rest. But when he decides to face his demons head on, he encounters more than he bargained for: a dangerous mix of jealousy, lies, and dishonest intentions. When those intentions threaten Aly, Jared loses all control, giving into the rage that earned him his bad boy reputation years before. And he’ll fight to protect her no matter what it costs…even if he destroys himself in the process.
3.5 stars – So many feels, too little story.
The sequel to the highly emotional Come to Me Quietly gives us the follow up to Jared and Aly’s story and we get to see them move forward with lots of detail, lots of swoon, and a beautifully happy ending that these two characters thoroughly deserve.
Warning – this will be a little spoilery if you haven’t read the first book.
This book picks up the morning after Come to Me Quietly finished, with Jared and Aly revelling in their reunion. Jared is still broken, but he knows that he can’t live his life without Aly in it, and he is finally accepting of his importance in Aly’s life, and how much she loves him. He still believes he isn’t good enough, but he needs her too much to walk away.
The significance of what Jared and Aly mean to each other is a huge part of this book, and there is a lot of time spent exploring that. Jared, in particular, clings to Aly as the only light in his life.
“Without you, I don’t have anything. And you’ve given me everything.”
Maybe…just maybe…there was something in this fucked-up world I was supposed to be living for. Last night had only confirmed it. I was living for her.
But despite the happiness that the two of them have finally found together, he doesn’t know how to atone for his past, and his guilt and self-hatred slowly continue to consume him.
Shame twisted through me on a gale-force wind – flashes of … what I had done. They all clashed in a violent fury against the love I’d found in this life, and the light that was Aly.
The battles that Jared goes through are absolutely heartbreaking – for both him and Aly. Although it takes a long time to get there, I really like the way that his big moment comes about, and I felt so proud of him when he finally started dealing with his demons. (view spoiler). And through it all Aly continues to be her fantastic and supportive self. She loves Jared with everything in her. She believes in him, and is so committed to him, and I love the way she stands by him without question.
This man was mine.
Volatile yet pure.
Corrupted yet worthy.
My beautifully broken boy.
I’m a huge fan of AL Jackson, and love the way she writes, but I must confess I struggled with this one. To me, it felt like an overly extended epilogue. There are pages and pages and pages of the two of them gushing about their love for each other – both in dialogue, but more frequently as an inner monologue. It’s beautifully swoony, but it got to be a little OTT even for me, and I am a self-declared sap of the highest order! And for a huge proportion of the book, that was pretty much all that was happening in the story. Yes, Jared and Aly were moving forward, but it was all dragged out in such minute detail (with yet another overlay of love and gushing) that I found myself getting bored, and I actually had to put this book down and go off and read something else. Twice!
This is definitely a book for mad Jared and Aly fans who want lots of love and gush, and who want to witness every single little moment of them moving on in their lives together. The writing is beautifully emotive, and I’m glad I persevered with the book – it was worth it for the story that takes place in the final 20%.
So yeah, mixed feelings, but I’m generally satisfied. 3.5 stars.
An advanced copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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