Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Review: Closer to You Series (#1 & 2) by A.L. Jackson

Review:  Closer to You Series by A.L. Jackson

Firstly, thanks needs to go to my co-blogger, Omra, for keeping up on this while I've been MIA.  *huggles*  No, I'm not fully back yet but I figured I'd get a few reviews up occasionally because I've been dying to.


Come to Me Quietly (Closer to You #1)

From the acclaimed bestselling author of Lost to You and When We Collide comes a New Adult novel of one woman’s obsession: a man who’s as passionate as he is elusive—and as tempting as he is trouble…

Aleena Moore is haunted by Jared Holt. It’s been six years since she’s seen her brother’s best friend, the self-destructive bad boy she secretly loved in high school. As the years pass, she knows it’s time to move on. Time to decide between a practical nursing degree and her true dream as an artist. Time to get over Jared and give another guy a chance…

Just when she opens her heart to her friend, Gabe, Aly returns home to find Jared sleeping on her couch. The teenage boy she loved has grown into a man she can’t resist. Covered in tattoos and lost in rage, he’s begging to be saved from his demons—the memories of the day he destroyed his family. As the two reconnect, their passion is hot enough to torch Aly’s judgment. But can she risk her future for a man who lives on the edge of destruction?

Buy:  Amazon

Review - 4 stars!

Firstly, to be honest, I had the freaking toughest time deciding on what to rate this book.  No joke!  There has only really been one other book (or author) I've had a tough time rating this badly.  Firstly, this is new adult, not my usual read (I'm more of a paranormal romance girl, nearly all adult in fact), but I do branch out.

Now to be honest, this is going to be a weird review.  Why?  Because in every possible way, I could pretty much rate this book with 5 stars for writing, plot, editing, story building, setting, characters, etc.  Honestly, A.L. Jackson's writing is excellent, one of the best writer's I've ever read.  Her characters are so in depth they might as well be real and you feel immensely for them.  Seriously.  Hands down, five stars everywhere.

Now the problem I had is that basically?  It was TOO beautifully written.  I actually can't believe I'm saying that either.  Yup.  It's too poetic.  The whole thing could make a trip to the grocery story the most beautiful thing you ever read and make you cry.  Nearly, anyway.

While yes, that's a GOOD thing.... it was a little too much of a good thing. Don't get me wrong, I could barely put it down, but when I was trying to decide if I liked it or not.  I did, which is why it's 4 stars obviously, and I knew I liked it, but I didn't like it enough to rate it the 5 stars I feel like I should be rating it, if that makes any sense!  

However, I do know this is my personal taste here, not really a reflection on the writer or novel.  I've read the next book in this series and one other book of this author's as well, but I had to put it aside after that because I needed a break.  I couldn't devour everything she's ever written all at once, which is why... 4 stars.  Sorry, A.L. Jackson!

To an actual review now, I guess.  I seriously love how absolutely tortured Jared is in this book.  I absolutely have to have some seriously screwed up, or alpha, or macho men in my books or I go a little tiny bit nutty and don't enjoy it as much.  Jared is seriously, seriously bothered, and it was so well done I was sniffling in places, and all out cried in a place or two.

Aleena, on the other hand, I did like a ton, but felt she was almost too perfect to be real.  Especially as young as she is.  She was a perfectly amazing woman throughout this entire book.  Which - as a woman here - I know is impossible.  I kept waiting for her to at least have the tiny flaw of say... PMS?  Or freak out over towels, or something.  Heck snoring.  Something!  I feel a bit inferior after reading her, because we all know, women have SOME flaw, and we all know Jared was so screwed up to have sixty zillion flaws, but yeah....  However, I didn't want her to be as flawed as Jared or anything, just a little itty bitty flaw.

The writing as I said earlier was beautiful to the point I kind of suspect the author is a professional poet too as well as author.  ^_^;

So, yes, 4 stars!

Come to Me Softly (Closer to You #2)

From the New York Times bestselling author of Come to Me Quietly comes a scorching new adult romance in the Closer to You series.

A second chance at life…
A second chance at love…

Jared Holt never thought he deserved either—until he found both in the arms of Aly Moore. Aly has loved Jared for as long as she can remember, and she’s more than ready for the future they’re making together. But Jared can’t help remembering his own family. And he’ll never forgive himself for what happened to them. How can he allow himself the very happiness he once destroyed? 

To live a life worthy of Aly, Jared knows he has to stop running and finally put his past to rest. But when he decides to face his demons head on, he encounters more than he bargained for: a dangerous mix of jealousy, lies, and dishonest intentions. When those intentions threaten Aly, Jared loses all control, giving into the rage that earned him his bad boy reputation years before. And he’ll fight to protect her no matter what it costs…even if he destroys himself in the process.

Buy:  Amazon

Review - 4 stars!

As this story continues Jared and Aleena's story, I went onward with this series.  So as in the previous review, everything still applies about how beautifully poetic everything is written.

Also as before, Jared is seriously tortured and Aleena is seriously perfect.

However, I'd also like to add I still love Jared despite him being seriously tortured.  Or maybe because of it.  Either way, he's hot.  For someone ten years younger than I am anyway.

I would also like to make one aside here.  Do people really run screaming from therapy until they're about to explode?  I mean, it was practically never mentioned until the very end and it wasn't even Aleena pushing that one.... which you'd think she would.  Instead she pushed a visit with Dad, which is good, don't get me wrong... just... yeah.  Maybe it's just me and having anxiety disorders so I'm used to the suggestion or doing it?  I don't know...

Now, as for the book.  Again, nearly perfectly written with a tad too perfectly done by the main female protagonist, Aleena.  Although something about this book dragged on a bit more than the previous one.  I don't know why exactly.  Maybe not as exciting because they're not as new?  Not sure.  Tried to figure it out, and I did read this fairly quick, but I kept looking at my progress to see if I was about done.

Again, this is just my personal taste though.  This isn't a flaw in a normal sense of the word, being too poetic and all.  It's not like trying to read something too wordy or descriptive to the point of boredom.  It was very excellently done.  I just read to escape and such and it was simple too beautiful to be fully entertaining, if that makes sense?

Closer to You #3:  Come to Me Recklessly

I will get to this one.  I simply needed a break, and Christopher isn't enough of a draw for me personally (I loved him as a supporting character, he was great!) to pick it up right this second!

Stay tuned!


(from author's website)

A.L. Jackson is the New York Times bestselling author of Take This Regret and Lost to You, as well as other contemporary romance titles, including Pulled, When We Collide, If Forever Comes, Come to Me Quietly, and Come to Me Softly.
She first found a love for writing during her days as a young mother and college student. She filled the journals she carried with short stories and poems used as an emotional outlet for the difficulties and joys she found in day-to-day life.
Years later, she shared a short story she’d been working on with her two closest friends and, with their encouragement, this story became her first full length novel. A.L. now spends her days writing in Southern Arizona where she lives with her husband and three children.

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