Welcome to our stop on the blog tour for The Destiny of Violet and Luke by the incredibly talented Jessica Sorensen. If you're like us you will have already read many of Jessica's books, so Violet and Luke are not new names. Their story is definitely one to read - I think I've found my favourite characters so far in Jessica's cast. Read on for an excerpt and my review - and be sure to enter the amazing giveaway while you're here.
Luke Price's life has always been about order, control, and acting tough on the outside. For Luke, meaningless relationships are a distraction-a way to tune out the twisted memories of his childhood. He desperately wishes he could forget his past, but it haunts him no matter what he does.
Violet Hayes has had a rough life. When she was young, she was left with no family and the memory of her parents' unsolved murders. She grew up in foster homes, living with irresponsible parents, drugs, and neglect, and trying to fight the painful memories of the night her parents were taken from her. But it's hard to forget when she never got closure-and she can't stop dreaming about what happened that tragic night. To make it through life, she keeps her distance from everyone and never allows herself to feel anything.
Then Violet meets Luke. The two clash instantly, yet they can't seem to stay away from each other. Although they fight it, they both start to open up and feel things they've never felt before. They discover just how similar they are. But they also discover something else: The past always catches up with you . . .
For a brief second, I seriously contemplate pushing the emergency button and stopping the elevator, so I can push her back against the wall and kiss her fiercely before pulling away and leaving her. Regain a little of my control and power over the situation.
But as the elevator continues up and my arms stay at my side, I realize that I can’t go through with it and honestly I have no idea why. She’s messing with my head and I don’t know what else to do besides stare at my reflection in the shiny steel doors for the rest of the elevator ride. When the doors open, I let out a breath of relief, glad we’re coming to the end of this strange, silent journey. As we approach Violet’s dorm room toward the end of the hall, I spot Kayden and Callie standing in front of the door. They’re smiling as they talk to each other and they make it look so easy, so natural, like it’s as simple as breathing. But even breathing is difficult for me sometimes.
Callie says something and Kayden laughs, but when he sees me walking up the hallway with Violet his expression fills with inquisitiveness.
“What’s up?” he asks as we walk up to them. He glances from Violet to me, then his eyebrows arch, his eyes widening a little.
Callie steps out of the way as Violet moves out of my arm and drags her foot as she moves up to the door. “Are you okay?” Callie asks, looking down at Violet’s ankle.
“Yeah,” Violet answers with indifference as she punches in the code to their room with her finger. The lock beeps and she shoves the door open, tossing her book aside as she starts to shut the door behind her. I’m about to call our stubborn challenge a tie, when she pauses with the door still open a crack, her eyes sparkling with life for the very first time, and says, “Thanks, Mr. Stoically Aloof.”
“You’re welcome, Violet with no last name,” I tell her and then she shuts the door.
I think out of all of the Jessica Sorensen books I've read Luke and Violet are my favourite pair. The two of them have worked so hard building walls to shield them from their experiences as children that they don't get close ... to anyone. That's why it is so surprising that without even trying to they manage to get behind each other's walls. And watching them struggle with what that means for them as individuals and potentially them together is fascinating.
Violet is such a complex character - to me she was really screaming to be loved but given her childhood experiences she didn't believe she deserved it. It's so heartbreaking to read stories about children that don't have the experience of a good family home and to acknowledge just how difficult that makes life for them. What makes it even worse is that Violet's childhood was taken from her, it wasn't that her parents weren't able to give her what she needed, it was the choices of others that cost her a loving home. Violet exists, she has protected herself from ever getting close and she thinks she is managing just fine, until Luke manages to get under her skin.
Luke's childhood was devastating. We got a glimpse of it in The Redemption of Callie and Kayden, but the depth of 'torture' (and there really is no other way to describe it) that his mother put him through is horrendous. Clearly she was dealing with her own demons, but a boy should not have had to endure what Luke did. His strategies for coping are so self destructive it is almost surprising that he has survived as long as he has. When Violet catches his attention, he is forced to question those strategies and he begins to wonder whether he can let someone in.
I am a big fan of Sorensen having read a number of her books. I have even more of them on my TBR and will definitely work my way through her entire catalogue. I love her angsty writing style, and the 'dark' elements that come through in her story. Perhaps that's because I am blessed enough not to have to deal with those elements in my own life? I'd also like to think it's because no matter how bleak the lives of her characters may be, she creates a hope that they can have more ... more of what they truly deserve, more happiness, more love.
While The Destiny of Violet and Luke finished at a point I was not anticipating it was actually quite fitting for the story. And while I don't normally like endings that don't bring some sense of closure to the story I've just read I was completely comfortable with this one. Of course I jumped straight to Sorensen's website to try and find out the name of the next book and breathed a sigh of relief to see 'Luke and Violet 2' listed on the 'Upcoming Projects' page.
4 out of 5 stars
The New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Jessica Sorensen, lives in the snowy mountains of Wyoming. When she's not writing, she spends her time reading and hanging out with her family.
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Jessica is giving away:
GRANDPRIZE: Kindle Fire