Friday, November 2, 2012

Review: Pulled by A.L. Jackson

**Two reviews for Pulled posted here**

Wow. I think my heart can finally beat on its own again. What an emotionally intense and addictive story....and I loved every minute of it! THIS is what I look for in a romance book and yet it's so hard for me to find.

Nine years earlier, Melanie relocated to a new town with her father. She met Erin who introduced her to her brother, Daniel. They started dating immediately. They were inseparable and fell madly and wholly in love. Their love instantly captivated me. It was a love so strong, it not only enveloped everyone around them, but me as a reader. I swear I could feel the love…a love that seemed to be too good to be true. Even an unexpected pregnancy, which I thought would change everything, did not distract the two from their initial feelings. It was all going as planned until one tragic agonizing night when the force that kept them together was torn away.

Fast forward nine years later and Melanie is now in a loveless marriage to a man named Nicolas. Melanie finds herself playing the role of a trophy wife to a man who only cares about himself. Nicolas is too caught up in a battle with his ego to notice how distant his wife has become. He's abusive and demanding and expects Melanie to be a pawn in his game of success. Oh how the unexpected can change our lives like an unpredictable tornado can violently rip through a town in minutes, leaving that town as serine as it found it, yet with a new identity.

Meanwhile, Daniel did not have the bitter-sweet luxury of finding a new mate after the unthinkable tragedy. When Melanie and Daniel parted ways, Daniel became an empty shell floating through life. He did what he was supposed to but never fully recovered from losing his one and only love. Even with them being separated for nine long years, he was never able to give his heart to anyone else. Right before an important dinner meeting, Daniel finds out about some unexpected and unwanted news that will change his life once again. To top it off, he runs into Melanie at the dinner with her husband, who he hasn't seen in nine years. What a way to twist the knife that was placed in his heart nine years earlier.

Joining Nicolas and Melanie at the dinner meeting is also Shawn and his wife Katie. Shawn and Katie are wonderful supportive friends that came as a surprise. At the dinner, you can feel the electricity developing between Daniel and Melanie once again. Nicolas knows something is up with Melanie, so she'll have to pay for it later. But when Melanie and Daniel are finally brought together after all those long and hard years, it was one of the most beautiful passionate moments I've ever read.

Nicholas is just what I love in a character. Yes, he was abusive and demeaning, but he brought more drama and tension to the story line. I also loved that Katie was there through thick and thin for Melanie no matter what. Melanie and Daniel have almost a love at first site relationship, which is not my normal thing. I usually tend to stay away from those kind of reads, but the author made it work so well weaving their past and present story together. Right before Melanie and Daniel were about announce her pregnancy to her father, something traumatic happens that nearly brought me to my knees. The pain and agony they were both experiencing was so strong I could taste it. Life at times can be hard and unfair....and it was so unfair in this moment. That's what I love about this author. She has a way of bringing the emotions and surroundings of the characters and story to the surface, as if you're really there going through it yourself. Her books are so deeply moving, you'll feel it down to the marrow in your bones.

I think there's something captivating about this author’s writing. I truly loved every minute of this book. My heart was pulled and torn in opposite directions the entire time. I wanted so much for these two characters yet they both lost so much in the blink of an eye. It was agony to read- but in a good way, if that makes sense. I love heart-wrenching, emotionally engaging, angst-filled romance stories with characters I can understand and relate to on some level. And that's exactly what I got. Pulled is such a vastly different story then Take the Regret, which is also by this author. I can't even begin to say which one is my favorite except that I loved them both in different ways. But I think Pulled may have won by a few inches. I can't wait to see what she has in store for us in the future.

Favorite lines of mine:

He stood above me, his body trembling. "This is forever."

When I look back now, though, I would never change it. There had always been a reason, and I would never regret where the path had led. Here, loved by this man, his body burning into mine, our spirits consumed by a fire that could never be quelled. Here, where out son slept peacefully in the room across the hall. Here, where we were home. Here, where we were pulled.

I woke every morning with my heart laid bare, wounds torn open, fresh pain oozing from every pore in my body.

I squeezed my eyes, willing them shut a moment longer, unable to tell what was worse-reliving the nightmare every night or waking to the life I didn't want to live.

The energy that bound our souls together was suffocating, her fire roaring through my veins.
"Melanie, you feel so good."


Make sure you have plenty of boxes of tissues available when you read this book. Pulled is a very emotional, heart wrenching read. It is a story about mistakes, heart break, soul mates, healing, forgiveness, and true love. You are drawn in from the first few chapters. Melanie is a trophy wife who is emotionally abused by her successful husband. From the start you know she misses the love of her life, Daniel, and that a tragedy happened that had separated them nine years before. Daniel, is a doctor who is in practice with his father, who is also broken emotionally from the pain he feels from missing Melanie. He tries to temporarily forget but can’t, he only wants his girl back and nothing and no one else can ever replace her in his heart. He has made mistakes, one big one that will play a major role in their lives and could heal or hurt their relationship.

I love a book where I can actually feel the emotions the author is trying to portray, and have a connection to the characters from the start. I was pulled, no pun intended, immediately into Melanie’s pain and heartbreak. You know something bad happened that broke her and her heart but not what and for me I just wanted to somehow reach into the book and hold her and tell her that it will be okay. You want to reach out and smack Nicholas, her abusive husband for the way he treats and talks to her. You feel the same sense of loss when you are reading Daniel’s point of view. When by fate they find each other again when Melanie’s husband is trying to get the contract to build Daniel’s new building you already start routing for them to begin to heal, but it is never that easy. Enter Vanessa, she is pregnant with Daniel’s child after trying to trap him into a relationship that he doesn’t want, she is like a bad rash that just doesn’t go away. She refuses to take the hint that Daniel doesn’t want anything to do with her and really doesn’t want the baby either.

The struggles that Melanie and Daniel go through, not just to be together but to heal, is heart wrenching because you learn how strong their relationship was from the moment they first met and you know that they are soul mates in the truest meaning of those words. They have this connection that can not be described, they are pulled to each other by a force stronger than can be explained in words. The heartbreak that they go through, and when you find out what that was, you are in awe that they are even functioning especially apart when they needed to be together. You can begin to feel the healing of their hearts and souls from the moment they reconnect and promise their love to each other once again. Forgiveness plays a huge role in the healing and reconnecting of their hearts and souls. When Melanie suffers the last time at the hands of Nicholas, you think it can’t get any worse for their relationship, that is, until Vanessa gives birth to her and Daniel’s son. The events that happen after that are the final steps in the healing of their wounds, the ones that were obvious to the world and the ones that they held deep inside. This story was a true happily ever after but only after heart break and pain.

I had to stop reading this from time to time because I would get so emotional and start crying. I literally was pulled, again no pun intended, into this book and felt like I was there. It brought up feelings and memories from my past that were painful that I thought were long buried. I strongly believe in soul mates and fate playing a role when we find our one true love, the one person who completes not just our hearts but our souls as well. I also believe that there is a connection like Melanie and Daniel had, when you find your other half, and when you find that connection, there are not words to describe the feelings you have. This is how a great love story is written, life is not all hearts and flowers, but it is also tragedy and hurt but it is also healing and forgiveness. I will defiantly be putting this book on my reread list and will be recommending this to my friends to read.


1 comment:

Maria D. said...

Great reviews - I like the idea of getting two different opinions -especially when you both really liked the book.


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