Series: Closer To You #1
Published by Penguin on January 7th 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Purchase @ AMAZON or BN or Purchase @ eStories
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Aleena Moore is content with her life. She has goals and dreams and an easy smile. She also has a secret she holds locked inside.
Jared Holt believes he doesn’t deserve to love or be loved. He destroys everything he touches. Haunted by the mistake that shattered his life, he’s fled from the memory of that pain.
Jared doesn’t know why he’s compelled to return, but finds himself drawn back to the place where it all began. The exact place where it ended. When he runs into his childhood best friend, Aleena’s older brother Christopher, he agrees to share Christopher and Aleena’s apartment while he looks for a place of his own.
Aleena is no longer the little girl Jared remembers from his past and evokes feelings in him he never wanted to feel again. Terrified of destroying her, he fights to keep her away. But her touch is something he can’t resist—the touch that sealed his fate.
Their pasts are intertwined and their futures uncertain. The only truths they know are the secrets they whisper in the night.
There is a reason why A.L. Jackson is one of my favorite authors. In every single one of her stories, she has this way of pulling you into her world to experience firsthand everything that her characters feeling. It is rare that an author can do this but somehow she does it so effortlessly.
So what is it story all about all about? It starts with Christopher and his little sister Aly. They have been childhood friends with Jared practically since birth. Both of their families were so close it was as if they were related themselves. When tragedy strikes one afternoon all of that is shattered. Jared blames himself with all that has happened and he starts losing control, doing the unimaginable up until it leads him to disappear.
Six years later, Jared renters their lives. It was as if fate was beckoning him home. Aly is now twenty and is just about ready to finally open up and start a relationship with Gabe. It was a long time coming but for some unexplainable reason, there was something holding her back. Her first glimpse at Jared and she knows what the reason was. For her, it has always been Jared.
“If I believed in soul mates or any of that shit, I knew she was mine. I could feel it, this connection with her I couldn’t possibly share with anyone else. Like we fit, this fucked up puzzle that made no sense until we aligned the pieces…”
Jared feels the same for Aly but because of his past, he thinks he doesn’t deserve any type of happiness. He believes that if he gives in to what he truly feels that he would eventually destroy her. He tries to resist but what they have is just too strong to ignore.
In every possible way, Aly was meant to be with Jared. She was the light in his darkness -his reason for continuing on. Time and again the author proves to us how deep their connection is. At a very young age he was always her protector and her, in turn, becomes his savior.
As a reader and a blogger, this is the one thing that I continue to search for in my reads. That perfect connection and I thought that A.L Jackson nailed it excellently.
I rarely get the “book hangover” but I sure did with this one. Both Aleena and Jared had their hooks embedded so deep into my soul that I took days for me to move on from their beautifully written and heartbreaking story.
Loved this book in all its entirety. This is definitely another A.L. Jackson book that deserves a 5/5 rating from me.
I didn’t knock, just turned the knob and let myself into the muted light of Aly’s room. Tonight, the blinds were shut. Thin lines of moonlight bled through the slats, and a small lamp sent a golden glow crawling up the wall behind her dressing table. It cast the rest of her room in shadows.
With her back to me, Aly stood as a silhouette in front of her bed. Her work clothes had been discarded at her feet, and she’d pulled on those same pink sleep shorts she always wore, giving cover to that glorious ass. She was in the middle of pulling a tank over her head. Waves of chunky hair fell down her back, all mussed and sexy. My fingers twitched, because damn it, I really wanted to touch, but I stayed rooted because I figured I was in no frame of mind to give into it.
Over her shoulder, she peeked at me as she adjusted the hem of her shirt. Discomfort lined her face, the green of her eyes subdued. “I was just coming to find you,” she whispered.
Swallowing hard, I stared at her from across the room, not sure what to do with the hostility still boiling in my veins. I felt on edge. Unhinged. But this felt completely different than the sickness that would forever darken my soul. It felt a little too much like the night I’d lost it at the bar at the mention of her name.
I reached back to lock her door before I turned to look at her, rushing an agitated hand through my hair, trying to quell the fucking insanity she spurred in me. “What are you trying to do me?” My tongue felt thick as I struggled through the admission. “I don’t. . .fuck, I don’t even recognize myself around you, Aly. I thought I was going to lose my mind out there, thinking about you in here with him.”
Aly slowly turned around and took one step forward. With her head angled low and tipped to the side, she squinted, like maybe I’d just pissed her off.
That was okay because I was a little bit pissed off, too.
Lines deepened between her eyes, disbelief laced in the words that spilled from her mouth. “Do you think for one second I’d choose him over you, Jared? He came here to tell me he missed me. That he wanted to be with me and he’d do anything to fix whatever had gone wrong between us. But the entire time, the only thing I could think about was you in the other room. How the only thing in this world I want is you. Don’t you understand that?”
All that fucking aggression snapped, like a band that had been stretched too tight, colliding with the need she had so tightly spun up in me. I crossed the room in two long strides. One second later, I had her in my arms, lifting her feet off the floor as my mouth seized hers. I was kissing her, my tongue demanding as I dragged her to her bed.
Her covers were piled in a heaped mess from where we’d slept curled in them last night, where we’d kissed and tempted and left ourselves panting and still in need. Our scent still lingered in them, thick and strong. Unwilling to break our frenzied kiss, I shoved the covers out of the way with one arm, the other supporting her back as I laid her on the bed.
Aly arched up as if she ached.
I grasped her perfect face between firm hands, my hold just as commanding as my mouth. Consumed, I pressed the length of my body into hers, blanketing her as my forearms fell to the bed to support my weight.
I wanted to possess her. Take her.
I wanted it all.
Grand Prize: A.L. Jackson Complete Signed Paperback Collection (all six titles) + Come To Me Quietly Poster and swag
Second Prize: Come To Me Quietly Collection, which includes a signed copy of Come To Me Quietly, a Come To Me Quietly poster, keychain, and custom bookmark
Third Prize: A.L. Jackson Fun Pack stuffed full of A.L. Jackson book swag
Fourth Prize: Audiobook Gift Set from Audible.com of The Regret Series (Lost To You, Take This Regret & If Forever Comes)
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