Title: Awaken (Spiral of Bliss #3)
Author: Nina Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance 18+
Publication Date: January 7, 2014
Cover Design: Victoria Colotta of VMC Art & Design
Event Organized By: Literati Author Services, Inc.
Synopsis“I love that you love me, professor.” “I love loving you, beauty.” Since their intense, passionate beginning, Professor Dean West and his wife Olivia have fought dark secrets and betrayal in order to save their marriage. Now reeling in the aftermath of a personal tragedy, Liv and Dean are driven further apart by a vindictive threat to Dean’s career. Struggling to stand on her own for the first time in years, Liv is determined to defend her husband and prove herself. Then an unexpected letter dredges up old insecurities and endangers Liv’s newfound independence. As Dean fights for his professional life, he is forced to confront his worst fear when he discovers that he can’t protect his beloved wife from her own painful past.
The highly anticipated conclusion of the Spiral of Bliss series doesn’t disappoint! You will find everything you wanted and more in this beautiful conclusion. The story was left in quite a bittersweet situation at the end of the second book, Allure. So we were really left wondering how Liv and Dean’s problems would resolve. Like the other books in the series, the story wrings you out until the characters can take no more, but the characters rise to the occasion and find their way.
This is a good, strong finish to this series. One that ties up all the loose ends. Loose ends that you may have not known were even present, but when made apparent, were true and needed addressing. Dean is still learning to hang back and trust Liv to be the strong person that she wants to, and can be. However, the lack of control that Dean has over his problems at work, and his inability to solve Liv’s issues, are frustrating to him. This is Dean’s cross to bear in this book.
This story had plenty of drama with Dean’s problem with the university and Liv’s loose ends with her past. More of Liv’s past comes into focus through flashbacks, so that is really fun to continue to learn about this character and what shapes her, still into the 3rd book. Some characters from her past resurface and really are the body of this story. However frustrating the drama that the characters bring, it lends a necessary element to story. The villains in this book bring the conflict, but have a vulnerable side that I could sympathize with. I began to understand the flawed and hurt people that they were. I felt bad for them at times, even though they were wrecking havoc on Liv and Dean’s world.
There are several things about the plot that I’d love to elaborate on, but I feel as if that would spoil the story a little. I’ll let you experience it yourself, but I will just say, LIV’S PAST! I have to say, it wasn’t where I envisioned the story going. To me, this was really Liv’s book. It continues to deal with her struggles to be who she wants to be as a woman, and finally putting her past behind her, where it can not have power over her. Poor Liv. Some of her stories are pretty heartbreaking. This book sneaks up into a really uncomfortable zone before it successfully jumps safely to a happy place. So it has angst. Check that box with a big, huge check mark!
The writing is consistent with the prior books, so if you’ve loved them, then expect that love to continue through this book also. The symbolism, metaphor, and references to the Wizard of Oz and Through the Looking Glass continue in this book also, and are fun to see interwoven in the story. You will definitely want to read this book to see if Dean and Liv get their HEA and what it would possibly look like. They are an intense and quirky couple that are unique and stand out among book couples. Saying goodbye to these characters is tough. You will find their ending beautiful, magical, and touching. Bring the tissues!
Purchase Links: Amazon US | Barnes & Noble| KOBO | iTunes
Purchase Links: Amazon US| Barnes & Noble| KOBO | iTunes