Friday, July 8, 2011

But I Love Him by Amanda Grace

But I Love Him by Amanda Grace
Release Date: May 8, 2011
Publisher: Flux

Tonight was so much worse than anything before it. Tonight he didn't stop after the first slap.  At the beginning of senior year, Ann was a smiling, straight-A student and track star with friends and a future. Then she met a haunted young man named Connor. Only she can heal his emotional scars; only he could make her feel so loved — and needed. Ann can't recall the pivotal moment it all changed, when she surrendered everything to be with him, but by graduation, her life has become a dangerous high wire act. Just one mistake could trigger Connor's rage, a senseless storm of cruel words and violence damaging everything — and everyone — in its path.  This evocative slideshow of flashbacks reveals a heartbreaking story of love gone terribly wrong. -

Wow.  I usually try to write my review within 24 hours of reading a book.  With this one, I had to wait.  It was just impossible for me to do it immediately after reading the book because I was just speechless.  I wouldn't have been able to articulate my thoughts on this one at all, as it got to me on so many levels.

First, I'm sure you can see from the opening sentence of the Goodreads summary that this story is about abuse in a relationship.  I actually didn't realize that when I picked it up.  This was one of those rare moments when I didn't bother to read the back cover copy but sat down with the book based on title and cover.  I am so glad that I did.  I was in for a rude awakening...expecting a cute contemporary.  Imagine my surprise.  Do I regret it though?  Not one bit.

This is one of those books that leaves you breathless, emotionally drained, in shock, but somehow oh, so grateful that you got to read it.  Like it was somehow a gift of someone's heart that you got to share.  I know I'm waxing poetic on this one but I can't help it.  It was just so touching and so heart-wrenching for me.

Oftentimes, when people hear about someone who stays in an abusive relationship, they think to themselves, "why does that person stay?  I would have left a long time ago."  I've thought it myself.  Well, this book gives you the answer for why people stay, even when it hurts them.  The author did such an amazing job of revealing the innermost workings of a person in an abusive relationship.  You can truly see how they are convinced to stay, even as you beg for her to get out while you read.  The fact that Amanda Grace was able to do this so skillfully was phenomenal.

Very rarely does a book make me cry.  This one did.  I actually found it on the shelf in Barnes and Noble and started reading it there.  Two hours later, I was still sitting in Barnes and Noble when I finished the book.  Then I bought it.  That scenario doesn't typically  happen to me.  A) I rarely finish a book in the store, even if I do like to sit down and enjoy it a little before I leave with it.  B) If I did finish a book in the store, why would I then buy it?  Because I had to own it. 

I could go on and on... but you get the idea.  I typically end my reviews by saying "If you liked this book, you might also like...."  Today I won't.  I don't know of a book that I could compare this to.  Bravo Amanda Grace.  Beautiful.


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