Rating: 3.5 Bookworms
Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up—she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.
Ryle is assertive, stubborn, maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily. And the way he looks in scrubs certainly doesn’t hurt. Lily can’t get him out of her head. But Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing. Even as Lily finds herself becoming the exception to his “no dating” rule, she can’t help but wonder what made him that way in the first place.
As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan—her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.
These types of reviews are always the hardest for me; the ones where it seems as though the rest of the world loves it and I’m in the super small minority that didn’t. I believe that for me the insane about of anticipation and promotion leading up to the release of this book tainted my reading experience. There was months and months of build up making it nearly impossible not to hear something about this book. I have never seen so many ARCS given out to promote a book meaning that before it was even officially published there were dozens of reviews available. All over social media people were posting pictures of their tear stained faces and raving about how this book is the absolute best book that they’ve ever read and how it has changed their life, so no pressure right?
Colleen kept stressing that she thought that when starting this book you should go in blind and I think that for the most part I did. I questioned reading this book so soon after its release because I knew that with the amount of build up going in to it it would be hard for it to live up to the hype. The synopsis is wholly misguiding because it makes it sound like a love triangle is involved when that is not the case.
Lily, in the beginning, seems a bit lost. A couple chapters in she seems to have hit her stride: opening her own business, having her mom close by, made some friends. We learn more about her past, and her past relationship, when she starts to read an old journal of hers and this is where we meet Atlas, which is a great name don’t you think? While this is happening she seems to fall in to a sort of easy relationship with Ryle, someone that she run-in with months prior and now seems endlessly tangled with her life. Her life seems to be coming together perfectly until a chance encounter with Atlas. As her relationship with Ryle develops she starts to question some of his actions. I think overall Lily was a very strong character doing the best she could in an impossible situation. My only problem is that I had trouble connecting with her. While I had no problems with her decisions there was just something about her that made it impossible to connect; that allowed me to see her situation as though I was in her shoes.
I don’t want to say much about Ryle and Atlas because I don’t want to give it all away. That being said Ryle is quite the complex character. I like that he, in time, is able to admit his faults and prove that at the end of the day he really does have Lily’s interest at heart. He doesn’t always make the best decisions but as he says:
“There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.”
Atlas knows what it is like to need a hand which is why as an adult he is fiercely protective. Even though we learn a lot about him through Lily’s journal Atlas the adult is a whole different animal. After being homeless Atlas is now an award winning chef with a bit of a chip on his shoulder. His love for Lily has never gone away and his infinite patience with her allows her to blossom, even if they are not together. I like the layers that make up Atlas: his soft side, his defensive side, his protective side. All put together they make one hell of a package.
I know when I have read a good book when I’m so moved by it that I’m simply unable to move on and unfortunately I didn’t have that problem here. It was a nice story but didn’t quite hit the mark for me.
About the Author
Colleen Hoover is the New York Times bestselling author of nine novels, including the #1 bestseller, Hopeless. She lives in Texas with her husband and three children. She is the founder of The Bookworm Box, a book subscription service which donates 100% of its proceeds to charity. She also owns The Bookworm Box, a specialty bookstore located in Sulphur Springs, Tx.