Sunday, July 30, 2017

Pieces of Me by Shiloh Walker

Title: Pieces of Me
Author: Shiloh Walker
My Rating: B-

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Main Characters: Shadow and Dillian
Release Date: July 2017
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:

Obsession can be deadly… 

Nobody knows that better than Shadow Harper. It seemed like a dream come true when a rich, suave older man noticed her during her second year of college. Stefan Stockman seemed to love her obsessively. He came into her life and swept her off her feet, seduced her, married her…and then slowly, eventually, that dream come true became a living nightmare.

Now, three years after she finally escaped him, she’s trying to put her life back together. Haunted by memories, struggling with post-traumatic stress, she spends most of her time locked away in her home on Pawley’s Island, a small town on the South Carolina coast. Her rare moments of joy come from her trips to the nearby beach.

She compulsively checks the locks on her doors, makes sure she has her cell phones—five of them—and if she misses something on her schedule, it throws her into a panic.

When she accidentally leaves a sketchbook on the beach, an anxiety attack seems imminent. Her art has become her salvation, her sanity, and losing even one sketch is like losing a piece of her soul. When she returns to hunt for the sketchbook, already fearing it’s gone for good, she’s surprised to find it still sitting there, saved by a sexy fellow beach lover—the mysterious Dillian Jenkins.

He’s brash, bold, brutally handsome…and gentle. He’s the exact opposite of the man who’d tormented her for years, and Shadow finds herself slowly, almost reluctantly, falling for him. Even obsessing over him.

When her ex-husband once again intrudes on the happiness she’s finally discovering, Shadow turns to Dillian. But will she find shelter there…or another betrayal?

My Review:
I'm going to tell you right up front that this is going to seem like a wishy-washy review. Shiloh Walker can write a mesmerizing story and I was completely caught up in Shadow's story, but it's not a happy one. Shadow has been horribly traumatized. And honestly this is somewhat of a theme with Shiloh Walker's books...her characters have lived through awful things. I know that, so when I was reading it and wishing that the book was just a little more uplifting, that was my fault. Shiloh Walker's don't leave you with a happier, lighter feel for having read them. They are dark and gritty.

But I did find this one more than a little depressing. And I think my real issue was that we didn't get any of the story through Dillian's point of view...and I get that there's a very good reason for that. But Shadow is just so broken...and then at times so trusting, too trusting if you ask me. The dynamic just didn't quite work for me. 

But the book moves along and I kept waiting for the shoe to drop. In that regard, it's very well-written suspense. I kept turning the page waiting for the boogeyman to jump off the page and attack Shadow. 

I hated how little was revealed about Dillian. I know that his reveal was supposed to be shocking, but besides his protectiveness about Shadow, there was really very LITTLE insight into his character. I hated that. I still feel like I have no idea who he really was or if he was the right guy for Shadow. 

Overall, I liked Shadow. She's a strong character to have survived and overcome so many of her fears after all that she's been through. I loved her art and even her OCD and phobias made sense to me. A lot of other little things didn't make sense...most especially how her ex-husband was able to do the things he did without leaving any trace. That was never explained and it was all just too easy for me to buy. 

The other thing that didn't work for me was that ending. It was abrupt and extremely unsatisfying. Nope, I was NOT a happy camper when I hit the last sentence in the story, and I'll tell you right now that dropped my rating on this book from a 4 star read to a 3 star.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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