Monday, September 1, 2014

Review of BROKEN (Redemption #1) by Lauren Layne

"Oh, I'm sorry, sweetie. Were your bear growl and caveman antics supposed to send me running away? Did you expect that I'd faint at your glower?" - Olivia Middleton

Series: Redemption #1
Author: Lauren Layne
Publisher: Loveswept
Release Date: Sept. 2, 2014
Source: publisher for review

Purchase Links: Amazon - B&N - iTunes
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Lauren Layne’s New Adult novel tells the story of a girl with secrets, a guy with scars, and a love that could save them both... or destroy them.

When Olivia Middleton abandons the glamour of Park Avenue for a remote, coastal town in Maine, everyone assumes she’s being the kind do-gooder she’s always been. But Olivia has a secret: helping an injured war veteran reenter society isn’t about charity—it’s about penance. Only, Olivia’s client isn’t the grateful elderly man she’s expecting. Instead, he’s a brooding twenty-four-year-old who has no intention of being Olivia’s path to redemption . . . and whose smoldering gaze and forbidden touch might be her undoing.

Paul Langdon doesn’t need a mirror to show him he’s no longer the hotshot quarterback he was before the war. He knows he’s ugly—inside and out. He’ll do anything to stay in self-imposed exile, even accept his father’s ultimatum that Paul tolerate the newest caretaker for three months or lose his inheritance. But Paul doesn’t count on the beautiful twenty-two-year-old who makes him long for things that he can never have. And the more she slips past his defenses, the more keeping his distance is impossible.

Now Paul and Olivia have to decide: Will they help each other heal? Or are they forever broken?

Broken is a poignant story of two characters battling their demons for the chance of redemption and love. What started off as a romance between two twenty-something year old rich kids quickly turned into a much deeper story that evoked emotions of sadness, hopefulness, and love. I was sucked into Broken from the very beginning. We meet Olivia and Paul, two characters with secrets that forced them into exile. On the surface, Olivia is tenacious. Deep down, however, she is ashamed of her actions and decides to run away from those she hurt. Once she meets Paul, she finds that he is not what she's expecting. It is Paul that brings out her tenaciousness. She has someone other than herself to focus on and she will not leave Paul alone with his demons. Paul, on the other hand, sees himself as damaged. He saw the worst in Afghanistan and brought it home with him. He survived when so many others didn't. Now that he is home, Paul is forced to heal emotionally and physically. He has to find the strength within him to face a world he thinks is judging him. The journey Olivia and Paul embark on together is what I thought made Broken amazing. The character development between these two beings was phenomenal. Both Olivia and Paul start off the story so badly broken that without each other, they would not have been able to pull themselves out of the depths of their exiles. They relied on each other. They leaned on each other. Without one, the other would have continued to falter. I adored Broken. My heart broke for both Olivia and Paul. I wanted them to find love in each other and celebrated when they did. They broke my heart and pieced it back together in the span of one book. I'm almost afraid to see where Lauren takes this series next because I know how emotional the books will be, but I cannot wait.

Lauren Layne graduated from Santa Clara University with a B.S. in political science that she has yet to put to good use. After dabbling in an e-commerce career in Seattle and Southern California, Layne moved to New York City, where she now writes full-time. She lives with her husband and their plus-size pomeranian in a tiny Manhattan studio.

Connect with Lauren: Facebook | Twitter | Website

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