Author : Colleen Hoover
Genre : Romance
Publisher : Simon & Schuster
Year of Publication : 2016
Number of Pages : 384
My Rating : 5 out of 5
Lily Bloom is upset following her father’s very emotionally draining funeral and just wants to be alone on a rooftop where she can breathe in the fresh air and unwind. She does not count on meeting handsome Ryle, a neurosurgeon with whom she makes an instant connection. During their brief chat, they tell each other some ‘naked truths’ about their lives.
Lily is trying to overcome complicated feelings around her father’s death and the life that she left behind when she moved to Boston. Ryle is struggling with his own demons that plague him. After their initial rooftop encounter, Lily doubts she will ever see Ryle again, as they want different things from life. When they reconnect several months later, she finds herself unable to resist him.
In addition to starting a new business, and settling her mother in Boston, she reminisces about her first love, Atlas. She met Atlas as a teenager, at a time when he was lost, and she saved his life. When she unexpectedly bumps into him again, she believes she will finally get the closure she needs to be able to move on with her life.
This is a love story, but not just the usual love story. It is a love story that almost made me cry in some parts and left me frustrated in others. Colleen Hoover is a bestselling author of romance, young adult, thriller and women’s fiction. “And maybe a ghost story soon,” as she says in her Goodreads Bio. It is no wonder then that this was not just a romance story, even though romance is at the heart of the book.
I really rooted for Lily and Ryle and the twist caught me by surprise. I honestly did not see it coming. As it turns out, this is a tale about life and relationships – and how complicated both can get. I found the story gripping, even as it took an unexpected turn. The author uses first person to narrate the story, so I felt all of Lily’s emotions intensely, as I followed her thoughts and experiences.
I loved Lily as a character and wish I had her strength. The other characters were also well developed and easy to relate to. This story seemed so familiar to me, yet the author managed to show me that some circumstances in life are not as they seem at first glance. She shows how easy it is to judge people unfairly when we do not fully understand what they have been through and what makes them act the way they do.
Ultimately, this is a story about one woman’s journey and her quest to overcome her past and build a fulfilling, meaningful life for herself. It tells us that we are not bound by our past – or even our present circumstances and we can make the decision to break patterns. No matter what path we take, there is always time and space to course-correct. This may not always be easy and it requires a lot of reflection to recognize where we went wrong and the right path. It also requires the courage to do what is right as opposed to what is easy.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and rate it 5 out of 5. I recommend it to anyone who loves a good story with romance and a bit of a lesson.