NEW COVERS for Vain & Greed + RELEASE DATE for Fury by Fisher Amelie

The much anticipated release of Fisher Amelie’s third standalone instalment in The Seven Deadly series, Fury, finally has a release date—4 May 2015! And to celebrate this upcoming release, we have two surprises for you!! Firstly, the first two books in the series have had their covers re-vamped. Vain and Greed are some of my favourite reads ever, beautifully written and incredibly poignant and profound, and I cannot recommend them highly enough. And secondly, you get to read a never seen before excerpt from Fury…right here, right now!! ♥

Vain_New
greed_new

VainMy Review | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
GreedMy Review | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback

✦ ✦ ✦

Fury May 4

Revenge is an euphoric thing. Trust me on this. Nothing compares to the release you get when you ruin someone’s life. When they’ve stolen important things. Things that didn’t belong to them. Things I revel in making them pay for.

What? Have I offended you? I’m not here to appeal to your delicate senses. I have no intention of placating your wishes or living within your personal belief system nor do I care if you hate me. And you will hate me. Because I’m a brutal, savage, cold-blooded murderer and I’m here for my revenge.

I’m Ethan Moonsong…And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most sacrificing man to the most feared and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

excerpt

I heard a snap and the light cracked on, piercing through my closed lids. My head pounded and I groaned then rolled over, pulling my cover over my head to drown out the source of my pain.

“Get up,” a deep voice commanded. “Get up,” he continued, kicking my shoe.

“Dad,” I rasped. “I’m hungover and feel like shit.”

He was silent for a moment so I pulled the cover down just enough to see his face. He was not amused.

“Ethan, watch your language, get your butt up, and find a job.” I didn’t answer him. I had nothing to say that would please him. “And while you’re at it, stop this ridiculous drinkin’, son.”

I sat up, ran my hands through my long black hair and wrapped the length around my fist. I sat back against the wall, reveling in how cool it was, and tried not to vomit.

“Did you see them today?” I asked him, unable to help myself.

My dad removed his hat and leaned against the jamb, scrubbing his face with his free hand. “You like to torture yourself,” he said, shaking his head then sighing. “You remind me so much of your mama.”

The mere mention of my mother sent me spiraling down once more in depression. We’d lost her a few years before and I was still in agony. That, coupled with the fact that Spencer Blackwell stole my girl right out from underneath my nose, was enough for me to drink to excess every night. I hate him.

“Are they,” I swallowed, afraid of his answer, “are they together now?”

My father sighed again. “Ethan, get dressed.”

“Are they?” I asked again, letting my hand drop to my side. My hair slid with it and cascaded down my back.

“You are a stubborn boy. Yes, okay? Yes, they’re together. All the more reason to move on, son.”

My body suddenly weighed a thousand pounds and I felt my head reeling. So it was true then. They were together and they would probably get married and I was going to have to sit there in that godforsaken small town and watch it all happen. I was going to get a front row seat to my own misery.

I nodded once, rested my hands on my knees for a brief moment, then ran past my dad, shouldering him as I did so and nearly knocking him over before making it to the small bathroom across the hall and retching everything in my stomach into the toilet.

My dad stood in the bathroom doorway shaking his head in disappointment. When I was done, I fell back into the wall. That look shamed me to my core. Any time my dad felt let down, I felt the weight of my disgrace so heavy the only thing I could think to dull the ache was to drink myself into a stupor. It was a vicious cycle.

I let my hair cascade over my face. I heard the old wood floor creak beneath his feet as he left without another word and jumped when the front door slammed. My eyes closed as my head pounded.

The claw foot tub sat to my left so I leaned up and turned on the water, slowly removing my clothing one piece at time. Each movement felt like a hammer slamming into my head.

“God,” I groaned. “I am an idiot.”

I stood then stepped underneath the warm water and just stood in silence, letting the water absorb into my hair and seep into my skin. I breathed in the steam deeply. I was miserable. Not just physically but my heart was the heaviest it’d felt since my mom passed and I had no one to blame but Spencer Blackwell for that.

The asshole who rode into my life under the guise of helping his sister only to yank what I thought was a stable foundation right out from underneath me. He stole from me, a bona fide thief, and I wanted to make him pay. No, I needed to make him pay.

But how?

I finished showering and threw a towel around my waist, stepping from the tub and toppling onto my bed when I reached my room and fell to sleep, not even bothering to dress myself. I fell quickly, fantasizing about my revenge.

I must have slept for hours because when I woke, it was pitch black outside. I rolled onto my side and checked my alarm clock. Eleven o’clock. Perfect timing, I thought.

I sat up and tucked my towel around my waist a little tighter, stood and went straight for my dresser. I grabbed a pair of boxers and socks and put those on before heading for my closet and tossing an old, worn pair of jeans on, a thermal and an old tee. I brushed my teeth, grabbed my wallet and keys, threw on my boots and headed toward my piece of shit truck.

I knew exactly where I was going because it was where I planned on going every night until I forgot about Caroline Hunt.

My truck started but barely and I tore out of our driveway not bothering with my seatbelt, kicking up dust and rocks as my tires spun against the loose gravel. I’d replaced my stereo because I couldn’t stand radio, at least not Kalispell radio, and plugged my phone into the audio cable. Bastille’s Dreams remake blasted and I turned it up, letting the painful lyrics wash over me, fueling my desire to get plastered as quickly as possible.

I entertained myself with thoughts of strangling Spencer Blackwell with both hands then beating the crap out of him with my fists. Bastard. I pulled into the local pub and put my piece into park before tucking my left foot into the emergency brake.

I disconnected my phone and the stereo went silent, reminding me of how alone I really was. I turned the engine off and absolute silence surrounded me. I couldn’t take it. My door creaked with age as it swung open and I slammed it shut, unable not to. The fury raging in my blood was more than I could contain.

Before heading inside, my hand went to the empty space between the cab and the bed and searched for the bottle of whiskey I always had wedged in between. I took a large swig, not wanting to spend too much of my savings on the liquor inside the crap establishment. After all, I was going to need it. Revenge was a costly business.

I took one more swig for good measure and wedged it back in its usual place then wiped my mouth on the back of my sleeve. My hair swung heavy in my eyes. It was still a little wet from my shower and I thought about tying it back with the extra leather tie I usually kept in my glove compartment but thought better of it. It helped me hide and I wanted to hide.

I looked around me. The lot was full but I only recognized a few cars this time which was good because I had no intention of making conversation. Regardless, most of Kalispell had stopped trying because I’d rarely done any responding since Cricket cut out my fucking heart and ate it raw. The hair was only insurance.

I took two deep draws of air, gulping it down, desperate for it to soothe me but, of course, it didn’t. I let each escape my lips in shaky breaths and clenched my fists over and over before deciding to head inside.

My boots crunched the gravel beneath my feet as I headed toward the door. When I entered, I ducked my head toward the floor and let my hair cover me, not that it did any good other than to conceal me. I could still feel the heat of their stares, though, still feel the pity in their gazes. I wanted so badly to yell at them to fuck off but I kept as much composure as possible. I couldn’t get kicked out of the only real bar in Kalispell.

I picked a stool at the end of the bar, the same stool I always did in the corner and in the back because it was dark. I sat and met Vi’s eyes. She sauntered over to me, placing her elbows on the bar top, giving me a clear view of her generous chest. I held back my eye roll.

“Hello, darlin’,” she drawled. “You look like shit.”

“The usual, Vi,” I told her as quietly as I could.

“How ‘bout a kiss then first?” she asked, leaning in a bit more.

“Christ, Vi, how many times? Huh? Just get me the gosh damn drink.”

She laughed. “Already worked up then, I see. I like it,” she said, winking.

Vi, or Violet, was thirty-nine years old, had lived in Kalispell her entire life, and had worked as a bartender for over fifteen years. I could tell at one time Vi had been a beautiful woman but I could also tell she had heard many hollow promises from equally hollow men and that she obviously believed them all. Otherwise, why would she still be there? I watched her tired eyes and her slightly too-forced smile. She had the look of someone who used to be chased but had graduated to the chaser. She looked miserable.

She left and returned with an empty glass and a bottle of Jack. She set the glass on the bar and filled it to the brim. She was being generous. She was always this way. She told me once she hoped I would drink it all away and decide to take her up on her offer. I told her that would be a cold day in hell, to which she only laughed.

“Drink up, buttercup,” she said, smiling lasciviously.

“I will,” I told the bar top.

I watched the world around me through the breaks in the hanging strands and six glasses later, I was starting to finally feel numb. I lifted my head a little feeling slightly relieved, feeling like I could breathe a little deeper now that the ache wasn’t so severe. I continued to search the crowd, not knowing who I was really looking for.

A quiet but persistent nagging awareness took residence in my chest for some unknown reason as I watched a girl dance on her own in the middle of the dance floor. Others around her paid no attention to her but she was the first person my eyes were drawn to. I studied her.

Her hair was tucked into a blue scarf, little tendrils peeking through and grazing across her neck whenever she moved. She was extraordinarily tall and her hips and rear end were more indulgent than I’d ever considered before. She turned slightly, giving me her silhouette. Her stomach was flat and her breasts were full. She was beautiful, I could tell, even if I couldn’t see her fully through the low lights.

“Jeez,” I said, swiping a hand down my face. “I’ve had too much.”

But I still couldn’t stop watching her. She wore worn jean cut offs, a fitted button up with the sleeves rolled up her forearms and ankle boots. She rolled her shoulders playfully, enticing someone she knew just off the dance floor. Another girl joined her side and they did the robot. She threw her head back and laughed.

This shocked me almost sober. “That laugh,” I whispered to myself. “That laugh,” I repeated. I knew it but couldn’t quite place it.

She took her friend’s hand and twirled her around the floor vivaciously. She was so full of life. So my exact opposite.

She lightheartedly skipped in place and raised an arm in salute to her friend before turning toward me.

That’s when I got a good, clear look at her. I gasped out loud and placed my hand on the back of my head, my elbow on the bartop, ducking my head down lower to hide myself further.

Please, please, please do not recognize me, I thought, still watching her from the corner of my eye.

She stood two seats down from me. “Vi!” she said, laughing a little. “Vi!”

Vi turned toward her. “Hey, baby! What’ll it be?”

“Can I have a water, please?” she asked, sitting down and releasing a breath of exhaustion. She continued to smile, though, and it ate a little at my gut.

“Of course,” Vi answered and started to pour water into a clear plastic cup. Vi’s eyes pinched a little. “Hey?” she said.

“Yeah?” she asked.

“How come I never see you drink anything harder?”

Her face fell a little but picked right back up. No one would have noticed it but me. “I’ve never had good luck with alcohol,” she admitted a bit sadly.

Vi was quick enough to recognize something there that didn’t want to be said and let it go with a nod, handing over the water without another word.

“Vi!” someone else called out and she walked their direction.

She took a long drink from her water and set it down, turning toward the crowd and surveying the dancers. A small smile tugged at the corner of her mouth, some private joke she shared with herself.

I looked on her for a long time. Long enough for my heart to calm itself. Long enough to struggle with myself in an internal argument. Finally, I decided that I wasn’t watching her because I found her attractive, though I knew she was. Only that I was wondering what she was doing there.

She turned around in her seat after catching her breath and glanced at me. For a moment, I believed she didn’t recognize me but I was wrong. A second scan confirmed it for her. She leaned in and narrowed her eyes. Shit.

Ethan?” she asked. “Is that you?”

“Hello, Finley,” I answered.

addtogoodreads

✦ ✦ ✦
Seven Deadly – Reading Order and Purchase Links
(standalone stories with interconnected characters)
Vain_New
greed_new

Vain: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
Greed: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback

Connect with author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

✦ ✦ ✦

✦ Don’t want to miss any more posts? Subscribe to this Blog by email… ✦

Other books in the series or related posts:

BOOK REVIEW: Greed by Fisher Amelie

greed

Gather ‘round, love, because I want you. I want what you have, I want what you don’t have, I want more of what I already have. I want. But if you so much as ask for something in return, go ahead and walk away. Know if you want to play in my world, it’s every man for themselves and the weak become mine. Leeches will be obliterated because I make it my job to destroy them. I protect what’s mine and I take what’s yours…because that’s what I do. I want.

My story will not endear me to you and, frankly, I could care less if it does because I’m in this for the money and nothing else. There’s nothing redeeming about me. I’m a corrupt, money hungry, immoral asshole from Los Angeles. I’m every man’s worst nightmare and every girl’s fantasy.

I’m Spencer Blackwell… And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most coveted guy to the guy no one wanted around and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

review

“The greed was more powerful than the will to do right.”

Spectacular. Impressive. Marvellous. Exciting. Remarkable. Mind-blowing. Epic… I am tempted to make this review just a collection of superlatives because this book left me speechless and utterly in love with every word in it. While I adored Sophie’s book and never expected a sequel to overwhelm me as much, I felt that Spencer’s story was even more inspiring and tinglingly romantic. I was hooked from the very first page and I truly never wanted it to end.

Spencer Blackwell is one of the rich kids of Beverly Hills, an elite group of privileged youths who take their parents’ wealth for granted and live a careless life splurging money on vices and luxuries. He has always moved in the same affluent circles, never knowing what it feels like to want for anything or work for a living. But Spencer’s life is not as rosy as it appears, being forced to live under his father’s thumb and obey his orders. A heartless man with no morals, his father’s disparaging and manipulative ways have shaped Spencer into his own lackey who values wealth above all and who regularly sells his soul to the devil by doing his dad’s dirty deeds. Deep down, Spencer is miserable, troubled by the heavy burden of his burning conscience, ridden by guilt and terrified of turning into his father one day, but powerless to do anything about it because his own greed won’t let him.

“I was certain there was nothing that could cleanse me, to launder my poisoned blood. This was who I was. Hopeless personified.”

Until the only person in his life whom he loves more than he loves himself needs his help and he is forced to take a stand. Desperate to save his sister from their dad’s cruel intentions, Spencer leaves his old life behind, cutting all ties, and escapes with his sister to a remote cattle ranch in Montana. Far away from everything the young Blackwells have grown up knowing, it surprisingly takes them no time to feel at home in their new environment and to start caring for the people around them. Spencer’s life in particular changes in every possible way, giving him a daily purpose and a sense of personal achievement that he’s never felt before. It doesn’t hurt either that on his very first day there he meets a girl who steals his breath away from the moment he lays eyes on her.

“If you took everything I’d ever found hot, beautiful in a girl and piled them into a corner, you’d get Cricket Hunt… standing in a corner.’

Cricket Hunt is the antithesis of every girl he’s ever met in his life, her kind heart, quick wit and passion for life drawing him in like a magnet, her mere presence soothing his tainted soul and warning off his nightmares. He cannot help but gravitate towards her whenever she is near, longing to hold her in his arms and unwilling to accept that she might belong to someone else. Their bond slowly grows each day but their mutual attraction quickly spirals out of control, making them both question their lives and the future they each envisioned for themselves.

“Cricket was a balm to my disturbed spirit… She was everything I never imagined I could possibly want. She was… devastating.”

This was hands down one of the most inspiring and truly lovely romances I have ever had the pleasure of day-dreaming along. I felt the raw chemistry between Spencer and Cricket in their every scene, I lived in anticipation of a simple kiss and loved every second building up to that earth-shattering moment. Forsaking explicitness in favour of a colourful writing style and a playful use of language, Ms Fisher somehow manages to  literally make us gasp for air with one single passionate embrace between the young lovers and not one graphic detail in sight. She weaves delightful ties between all her characters, making us feel something for each one of them.

Just like its prequel, this story also carries a powerful message, a message of love over material possessions, of learning to value what matters in life and be willing to sacrifice everything for the wellbeing of loved ones. It also praises the power of the human spirit and its ability to break away from old demons. This was a book I wanted to hug, squeeze, never let go, and it made my heart burst with joy. This is one of my favourite reads of the year and it’s the kind of story that simply begs to be re-read very very soon.

“This was farther from home than I’d ever realized. This was friggin’ Mars.”

5stars

signature2

addtogoodreads

Buy book: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
✦ ✦ ✦
Seven Deadly – Reading Order and Purchase Links
(standalone stories with interconnected characters)
vain5
greed

Vain: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
Greed: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback

Connect with author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
✦ ✦ ✦

✦ Don’t want to miss any more posts? Subscribe to this Blog by email… ✦

Other books in the series or related posts:

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Greed by Fisher Amelie

One of the most poignant books that I have ever read is the beautiful Vain by Fisher Amelie. When I dove into that book, I had no idea I would find a spectacularly written, deeply emotional story of love, loss, redemption, learning what truly counts in life. Learning later on that that would only be the first book in a series of seven standalone stories was a dream come true. Today, I have the great pleasure of giving you an exclusive excerpt from the second book in the series which was unleashed into the world only a few hours ago. I am half way through and I cannot put it down!!! My review will be posted in a few days’ time. I give you the very delicious Spencer and Greed

greed

Gather ‘round, love, because I want you. I want what you have, I want what you don’t have, I want more of what I already have. I want. But if you so much as ask for something in return, go ahead and walk away. Know if you want to play in my world, it’s every man for themselves and the weak become mine. Leeches will be obliterated because I make it my job to destroy them. I protect what’s mine and I take what’s yours…because that’s what I do. I want.

My story will not endear me to you and, frankly, I could care less if it does because I’m in this for the money and nothing else. There’s nothing redeeming about me. I’m a corrupt, money hungry, immoral asshole from Los Angeles. I’m every man’s worst nightmare and every girl’s fantasy.

I’m Spencer Blackwell… And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most coveted guy to the guy no one wanted around and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

excerpt

I found a window, but the glass was so old and cloudy, you could hardly see into the lit room. I pressed my face against the glass.

Oh…no. No.

Cricket was inside, blasting a few tunes in a light denim button-up that fit so snugly I almost fell over. The sleeves were rolled up to allow her to work, and the shirt was tucked into a pair of high-waisted denim shorts with two rows of brass buttons down the front panel. My gaze followed down her short but beautiful legs to knee-highs. Her hair was wrapped in a bright red headscarf. Like a modern day frickin’ Rosie the Riveter. And so unbelievably sexy. I could not compare her to anyone. When I looked on her, I couldn’t even tell you that other women existed.

My hand tugged down my face. Suddenly, I felt stifling and had to pull off my knit cap and scarf. I swallowed. Turn. Turn and run and get out. Turn, I ordered myself.

But that’s not what I did. Oh no. No, I was a glutton for punishment, it seemed. Instead of doing what I should, I did what I couldn’t help, and knocked. I watched her reaction through the window. She dropped the pieces of scrap metal she’d been rummaging through and came to the door.

I stood upright once more and checked myself. The door swung open and the scented candle she was burning bowled me over. The smell of baking chocolate cake swarmed around me, and all I wanted to do was taste Cricket.

My mouth gaped open, ready to speak, but no words would come. Her face flamed red.

“I’m sorry,” she said, her hands going to her naked thighs. “I thought you were my grandmother. She checks on me sometimes.”

“I-I was taking a walk and saw the light on.” I swallowed, my gaze raking her body. She was covered pretty much from head to toe, but no matter how hard Cricket tried, she couldn’t hide her curves. “I’m not disturbing you, am I?” I asked.

“No,” she said, taking a deep breath. She opened the door wider and invited me in.

Careful. Be careful, Spencer.
Inside, it was incredibly warm. In the corner sat a wood burning stove and it looked like she’d put on a fresh log. I absently noted that she intended to stay for a while. I removed my jacket and placed it along with my cap and scarf on a table near the door. I studied my surroundings and discovered there were shelves and tables scattered in disarray around the room and were full of fascinating sculptures. My eyes lingered on one. The head of Winston Churchill.

I turned to Cricket. “Your work?”
Her cheeks flushed an enticing vermillion. Oh, Cricket. You would be so smart not to blush again.

“Yeah,” she answered simply.

She seemed embarrassed, adding to how attractive I found her, and studied the ground with her hands tucked behind her back. She fought a smile while I fought to keep my hands at my side.
She made herself busy by clearing a stool covered in scrap metal. She cleared her throat nervously and presented the stool to me before rounding the table she’d been working at when I discovered her.
I sat, my legs spread and hung both my arms over the back of the stool. Her eyes widened when she turned my direction and I almost laughed out loud. I unnerved her.

Click.


“Cricket Hunt, show me your stuff.”
Her head whipped my direction.

“Excuse me?”

“Your sculptures?”

“Oh,” she giggled, “sure. Uh,” she began and stiffened her back, “but first you have to promise not to laugh at any of them.”

“Cross my heart,” I told her, making the motion my thumb.

She sighed, deciding something then with conviction she marched over to a shelf tucked into a narrow corner of the cabin. She stretched high, trying to reach one on the top shelf but she was too short. She made a movement to find something to stand on, but I stopped her.

“I’ll get it,” I told her, slinking off the stool and stalking toward her.

She made a movement to make way for me, feinting left then right, but I blocked her in. She looked up at me and it set my heart racing. I studied her face for a moment, unable not to.

“Which one?” I asked softly.

“Th-­‐that one,” she explained, her eyes trained on the sculpture at the far top left.

I reached over her and our bodies grazed from the proximity, sending shivers up my spine. I had never felt shivers before, not before Cricket. Not like that. Never like that.

I picked the piece up and brought it down to chest level for me, eye level for her. “This one,” I breathed.

“That’s the one,” she confirmed, not even glancing at the sculpture.

Her eyes were trained on my lips. She irresponsibly licked her own before drawing her bottom lip under her top teeth. I winced at the pain it caused me, a shot of pure fire blasted from the tips of my toes to the top of my head only to settle in the hollow of my stomach. It was a good burn though. Too good.

I uprooted my weighted feet and somehow walked away from her, but not before glancing back once more. I found Cricket had briefly sagged into the wall beside her before finding her bearings again.

Click.


The fire continued to burn in my belly, knowing that if I really wanted to, I could steal a kiss. I knew if I did, though, she’d be all in then, all passion and hands, but just as quickly she’d be all out, an iron door slammed shut over the one I’d built the day we’d taken Bridge to the doctor. The one I erected only to immediately search out the weakest part. The part I shoved a boot through the second I saw Cricket Hunt in knee‐highs and high-waisted shorts. And the last thing I wanted to do was create emotional distance from the very girl who sent me flying to the moon every time she licked her lips, smiled or crinkled her nose.

addtogoodreads

Buy book: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
✦ ✦ ✦
Seven Deadly – Reading Order and Purchase Links
(standalone stories with interconnected characters)
vain5
greed

Vain: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
Greed: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback

Connect with author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
✦ ✦ ✦

✦ Don’t want to miss any more posts? Subscribe to this Blog by email… ✦

Other books in the series or related posts:

BOOK REVIEW: Vain by Fisher Amelie

vain5If you’re looking for a story about a good, humble girl, who’s been hurt by someone she thought she could trust, only to find out she’s not as vulnerable as she thought she was and discovers an empowering side of herself that falls in love with the guy who helps her find that self, blah, blah, blah… then you’re gonna hate my story.

Because mine is not the story you read every time you bend back the cover of the latest trend novel. It’s not the “I can do anything, now that I’ve found you/I’m misunderstood but one day you’ll find me irresistible because of it” tale. Why? Because, if I was being honest with you, I’m a complete witch. There’s nothing redeeming about me. I’m a friend using, drug abusing, sex addict from Los Angeles. I’m every girlfriend’s worst nightmare and every boy’s fantasy.

I’m Sophie Price… And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most envied girl to the girl no one wanted around and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

review

“No one can know sincere happiness, Sophie, without first having known sorrow. One can never appreciate the enormity and rareness of such a fiery bliss without seeing misery, however unfair that may be.”

There’s a proverb that says, “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” This is the truly beautiful story of a young woman’s journey from egocentricity to self-awareness, from having regard only for herself to being willing to sacrifice her own happiness for the sake of another human being. There is also a sublimely heart-melting love story embedded in the midst of one of the most moving, relevant and attention-worthy plotlines I’ve had the pleasure of reading of late. Nothing about this book is cliché, been-done-before or mundane. This is an emotional roller-coaster that will take you out of your usual literary comfort zone, grip you and keep you at the edge of your seat, begging for more.

Sophie Price is perfect. Her face is perfect. Her body is perfect. Everything in her life appears to be perfect. Her wealthy but neglectful parents have given her the type of lifestyle where everything has always been served to her on a silver platter, with no responsibilities or consequences for her actions. She is the ‘Queen Bee’ of her little click of entitled kids, wanting for nothing and taking it all unapologetically. She is selfish, self-centred, an awful friend who uses and discards people only to feed her starving ego. But when Sophie is alone, a scared and insecure little girl emerges at times, one that believes that her beautiful features hide only ugliness inside her. She detests that weakness in her, always striving not to show any real emotions in front of people, hoping no one would ever notice how meaningless her life really is.

“I stood in front of the mirror and took a good hard look. I was as bare as I could make myself, no makeup with wet, stringy hair. I hated to look at myself in this state. I didn’t feel real. I felt too exposed and that made me exceedingly nervous, but I made myself look that morning. I memorized that girl. That girl was the real me. Frightened. Worthless. A terrible friend. Terrible daughter. Well educated but so limited in ideas worth having. Beautiful yet repulsive…”

After indulging in a life of debauchery and vice, life finally catches up with Sophie, turning her entire existence upside down and throwing her in the midst of Africa to serve a six-month sentence at Masego, a struggling orphanage for children affected by war and violence. It is there that she meets Ian/Dingane, a young man who appears to only see the ‘ugly Sophie’ in her, one that does not belong or deserve to be at a place like Masego and one who would never make it there. For the first time in her privileged life, Sophie’s looks or possessions are not what define her. She is forced to dig deep inside her shallow soul for infinite amounts of courage, compassion and love for the sake of the innocents that fulfill her days with unconditional trust and affection. Through those children, Sophie learns to appreciate the gift of life, first and foremost, and to never again take what is given to her for granted.

“… what is there to be joyful about?”
“Life, Sophie. They still live. They breathe, they love each other, they find joy in the world around them for no other reason than because they are children. They are resilient. They will always rise above. Always. It is a curious facet of the innocent young.”

Her relationship with Ian changes as well, their physical attraction continuously growing and the trust between them building a firm bond between them. Through Ian’s eyes, Sophie sees the person she wishes to become. He teaches her to draw strength from even the most painful of emotions, to see beauty in the small things in life and to love herself for her heart, not her appearance.

“Fear, sadness. They’re not weaknesses. They are overpowering, defining emotions. They make you human, Sophie.”

The connection between Ian and Sophie grows against all odds, two kindred spirits finding each other and desperately hanging onto one another in a dangerous world marred by political turmoil and instability, where survival and protection of those who cannot protect themselves becomes their first and only priority. Their love story develops gently and tastefully. Against a horrific backdrop of some of the worst sins that human nature is known to be responsible for, Sophie finally learns to love – love herself, love those who show her kindness, love those who deserve kindness from her. She also learns to love a man, deeply, openly and above all, selflessly.

“Men wanted me. They all did, however briefly, but none of them wanted to keep me. That’s what I needed. I needed to be owned, loved. But not by a man. I knew then that I never needed to be kept by a man. What I needed was to love myself, to want to keep myself around. And in that revelation, I knew that if I wanted to keep myself, that a man wanting to keep me would just be a by-product. Who wouldn’t want to keep someone who respected himself or herself?”

But this is not your average love story. Happiness has a hefty price tag in this beautiful tale of love, loss, courage and redemption. Our heroine travels a painful journey of self-discovery, learning to love and embrace the person she really is, and finally finding her true purpose in life. It is only then that Sophie truly becomes ‘beautiful’.

A genuine work of art of new adult fiction, this story will stay with you, possess your every thought and make you feel. Everything.

“If we don’t make out of this alive, Sophie Price, I want you to know that I’ve never loved anyone as much as I love you. You’re it for me.”

5stars

signature2

addtogoodreads

Buy book: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
✦ ✦ ✦
Seven Deadly – Reading Order and Purchase Links
(standalone stories with interconnected characters)
vain5
greed

Vain: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback
Greed: My ReviewAmazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Paperback

Connect with author: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
✦ ✦ ✦

✦ Don’t want to miss any more posts? Subscribe to this Blog by email… ✦

Other books in the series or related posts: