The 2016 Goodreads Choice Awards for Romance went to Colleen Hoover for this book. I know. That was like 6 years ago. But, recently a lot of my friends on Goodreads and Instagram have been reading this book and giving it raving 5 star reviews. So, obviously I had to get my hand on this book to find out what the hype was all about. On the surface, I can’t really tell what it’s about. I guess I’m a bit weird – in that I often don’t read excerpts about a book just its category and ratings. So again, like I did with Razorblade Tears, I had no expectations – just excited about reading this book. It’s kind of fun like going on a blind date with a book! Haha
*I’d like to preface that this book deals largely with Domestic Violence/Abuse and I understand that it may be a touchy subject for some people.*
This is a story about 23-year old, Lily Bloom who, despite growing up in a domestic abusive family – largely between her parents – learns to fall in love, the importance of self-respect and how to give the best kind of love at the end.
“Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming“
This book jumps from the present to the past throughout in a very easy to understand way. We are presented with the present through Lily’s narration, and the past with her childhood journal entries to none other than Ellen DeGeneres. She writes to Ellen as if they know each other, but in reality, she is just a fan of the show and she hopes her letters will make it to Ellen some day. She writes about her abusive father, and how the one man who’s supposed to serve as an example as a man is making her doubt all men and most importantly, falling in love. She writes about her days, and about the boy who she spotted living next door in the empty house with no electricity or running water. His name was Atlas Corrigan. He loves to cook, treats her well, she falls in love with him just before he is set to move to Boston. And they lose touch.
“It stops here. With me and you. It ends with us.”
Years later, she settles in Boston after graduating college and on the brink of starting a new business. Lily Bloom’s Floral Shop. She meets neurosurgeon, Ryle Kinkaid, who is only into one night stands, and Bloom being a no BS relationship one-man only kind of girl – though incompatible in that sense, end up falling head over heals for one another. Their relationship – yes, relationship – was exciting, sweet, complicated, hurtful; it was many things. Many of Kinkaid’s actions started to resemble Lily’s father’s but she was convinced they were not alike, not the same person. But, after repeated episodes, she is left with the heartbreaking question of whether she should stay or leave. Especially after finding out after his last episode, that she was with child.
Ahh this story was so many things, and gave me SO many feels. The innocence of Lily’s journals to Ellen DeGeneres, the excitement of her new found relationship, the success of her new business and the bittersweet decision she has to make at the end all were woven together too perfectly. Whatever I was thinking before reading this book (I wasn’t) I am now 100% a fan of Colleen Hoover’s writing. I would give all my stars to this book! Please read it and let me know your thoughts on it as well!
Oh, and did I mention that throughout all of this, Atlas makes his appearance back into her life too? As far as what role his reappearance in her life plays … well, guess you will have to read the book to find out!