“My eyes grow heavy, and my heart stills completely. She couldn’t be further from the truth, and this moment — it’s literally breaking me into two halves. I want to protect her, but I also want her more than I’ve ever wanted anything in my life.”
What a beautiful story! If you need any convincing to read this book, just read the prologue. That’s it. Literally just the prologue. As soon as I read it, I WAS HOOKED!! The beautiful writing was immediately captivating and the angsty feels brought on by the emotional complexities of this story tugged my heart-strings even before I knew anything about the characters. At that point, I couldn’t stop and just kept right on reading until the very last page!
This was both an incredibly painful and yet heart-warmingly inspiring love story that both surprised me and kept me guessing. It was deep, full of heart, and I didn’t want to put it down!! But this is also definitely one of those books that I think you should read knowing as little as possible in advance. Go in as blind as you can because the author did a phenomenal job of keeping you guessing about the characters’ pasts and wondering about what was going to happen next and I really don’t want to spoil anything for you at all. If you’re curious though, here’s the blurb…
Fractions of seconds can do lots of damage. One decision can ruin lives. A blink can be tragic. And loving a Hollister…can hurt like hell.
I would know.
They say the average person can hold their breath under water for two full minutes when pushed to the extremes. Will Hollister has been holding his for years. The oldest of two elite swimming brothers, Will was always a dominant force in the water. But in life, he preferred to let his younger brother Evan be the one to shine.
Evan got the girl, and Will…he got to bury all of the secrets. A brother’s burden, the weight of it all nearly left him to drown.
The daughter of two Olympians, my path was set the day my fingertips first touched water. My future was as crystal clear as the lane I dominated in the pool—swim hard, win big, love a Hollister.
My life with Evan burned bright. He gave me arms to come home to, and a smile that fooled the world into believing everything was perfect. But it was Will who pushed me. Will…who really knew me.
And when all of the pieces fell, it was Will who started to pick them up.
In the end, the only thing that matters are those few precious seconds—and what we decide to do while we still have them in our grasp.
I had so many questions… What happened to Evan? Why were Will and Maddy estranged? If so, what was the cause? What had their relationship been like before? What would it be now? And what was Will’s secret? But I don’t want to discuss the plot any further than this really because I don’t want to take away even a second of the reading experience by saying too much so if you’re intrigued by the story, my best advice is to just dive right in!
Will and Maddy had a lot of shared pain and history and yet in many ways experienced such different sides of thing that they both had a lot to learn from each other. Given the complexity of their past and all the unresolved and unspoken emotions between them, there was too much pain to acknowledge, but too many feelings to ignore, and so they rode this delicate and fragile line knowing that any moment, everything could come crashing down around them… especially with the big secret Will was keeping that had the power to turn her world upside down.
“It isn’t his fault he survived.”
My eyes flutter to a close again and my chest burns. I hate her honesty. Perhaps because I’ve never mastered it.
She’s right, of course. Every single word out of her mouth is truth. But I still don’t know if my heart can handle seeing him again, and I think maybe there’s a part of his heart that can’t bear to see me too.
Too many reminders.
Too much that’s familiar.
This book is a complete standalone and I will say that it’s not a love triangle (I know it kind of sounds like one, but it’s not — especially not in the way you might think it is). There’s a resolved ending and beautiful epilogue. It’s a New Adult romance, it’s told in alternating first person POVs, and it’s very beautifully written.
As a personal confession, I can say that I’m not really a morning reader. I prefer to read books at night. But I read the prologue of this book at 7AM and quite literally didn’t stop reading until I’d reached the very last page! This is the second book by this author I’ve read this year — I also read another unrelated standalone called The Hard Count (my review) a few months ago — and now I’m definitely looking forward to reading more from this author!
This is a story of love, loss, and second chances. It’s a story of losing hope, but having the strength and perseverance to keep pushing forward to overcome the odds. It’s a story where an unexpected twist of fate can change everything, but also of realizing that sometimes the hardest roads can lead to the most beautiful endings.
If you’re looking for something new and different to read, check this book out!
Rating: 4 – 4.5 stars! Standalone New Adult Romance.