Pain, desperation and grief.
For Ashley Akerman, they are things that she has grown accustomed to feeling over the twenty-five years of her life.
She always found it difficult to integrate into society, realising that her imperfections were always going to be the cause of her own insecurities.
Stumbling upon the sassy Gabriela one day changed Ashley’s life for the better. She was introduced into a new circle of people that accepted her for her personality and didn’t judge her on her looks. But the good luck had been running for far too long… and time was up.
When that devastating moment arises and Ashley loses the support system she has grown to rely on, how will she be able to continue?
Will she revert to her previous life of merely existing as an empty shell in the world, or will the unplanned arrival of a certain Italian playboy throw everything into absolute and utter turmoil?
Finding the strength to fight on through the destruction will be key for Ashley. Will she be able to overcome the overwhelming fear of her past catching up with her once again? Can her broken soul be repaired, or has she finally reached the point of irrevocable damage?
I enjoyed this book, even though I didn’t feel the emotional connection to the characters that I usually like, I did find that the author did a great job at describing Ashley and her feelings of isolation and rejection in society. She didn’t come across as a strong woman, but as you read and get to know her you realize her strength was the silent kind. She knew what she wanted; she just never made a huge production to get it.
After being an outcast most of her life because of a birthmark on her face, she had grown up knowing her mother’s rejection and the loss of her childhood best friend. Starting over and away from her parents was her escape. Finding Gabby as a best friend was her shining moment because Gabby not only worked hard at getting Ashley to see her value she introduced her to some amazing people who accepted her, defects and all.
When she started dating Ben she felt that maybe this was her future but something was nagging at her and held her back. It wasn’t until a tragic event that shattered her and brought her face to face with Marco, that she realized her life had never been her own. Marco was a sexy man who considered himself a playboy but the same event that sent Ashley to her knees had also crippled him as well. Reaching out to each other to help fill the void they found more, but it wasn’t going to work without a fight.
We see the evils of money, humans and emotions in this journey, while love and unconditional acceptance is never far away. There was plenty of suspense and drama in the story. As the truths become exposed and the real issues are address, it becomes like an onion that Ashley is peeling back, one layer at a time. I loved the ending, it was so perfect for this couple and left me smiling as I finished the last page.
Beth Ashworth was born in Manchester in 1990, but shortly moved to the modest city of Coventry where she was raised and still resides now.
As an avid reader from a very early age, Beth has always been keen to put her words onto paper. As a child she was always found with either a book in her hand, a pen and notepad or a computer games controller.
Starting off by initially writing alternate endings to her favourite Jacqueline Wilson books from around the age of ten, Beth has continued to grow and love her passion for books.
Eventually, after many unfinished books and short stories, she finally decided to follow her passion and write books that she hopes people will love.
When she isn’t reading or writing, Beth loves to spend time with her husband and friends.
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