Friday, August 30, 2013

Promo Post Review & Giveaway: IF YOU LEAVE by Courtney Cole

If You Leave (Beautifully Broken Series, Book #2)
By: Courtney Cole
Release Date: August 6th
Goodreads Link:
26-year old Gabriel Vincent is a badass hero. Or he used to be, anyway. As an ex-Army Ranger, Gabe never thought he needed anyone. But after one horrible night in Afghanistan scars him in a way that he can't get past, he needs someone who can help him heal...even if he doesn't realize it.

25-year old Madison Hill doesn't need anybody...or so she thinks. She grew up watching her parents' messed-up abusive relationship and she knows there's no way in hell that she's ever letting that happen to her.

They don't know it in the beginning, but Gabriel and Madison will soon develop a weakness: Each other.

But Gabriel's got a secret, a hidden monster that he's afraid Maddy could never overcome... And Maddy's got issues that she's afraid Gabe will never understand. They quickly realize that they need each other to be whole, but at the same time they know that they've got demons to fight.

And the problem with demons is that they never die quietly.

*ARC provided by author for an honest review*

When I read If You Stay, I immediately fell in love with Pax and Mila. Everything about them and their story appealed to me as a reader. So, naturally when I found out that there would be more of this series, I was excited. Because I knew not only would we be getting more Mila and Pax (which we did, YAY!) but also Mila's sister, Maddy's story. 

If You Leave gives us a better understanding of how difficult it was for Madison to give up her life to come home and take over everything when their parents died. She took on all of the burdens so that her sister could go on living as close to a normal life as possible. It was easy to see that Maddy felt like she was living out someone else's dream. Not to mention she is holding on to memories from her past that are crippling her ability to truly find happiness. And it is taking its toll on her.

Gabe is a true American hero. He is a retired Army Ranger who experienced the horrors of war and lived to tell about it. But the problem is, he isn't telling about it. His way of dealing with the thing that drove him away from the one thing he loved in life, being an Army Ranger, is by holding it all inside. It is obvious he is suffering for PTSD but he has refused any and all help. 

Their book is about their journey of facing their demons. Madison is able to do it more easily than Gabe. He is fighting a battle against something that is not as easily overcome as Madison's. When Gabe finally does came clean with all that happened while he was in Afghanistan, my heart broke for him. To have to carry that burden on his shoulders was gut wrenching. 

 While I did not love Gabe and Maddy as much as Pax and Mila, they still wormed their way into my heart. They were both too broken not to. (I am a total sucker for those types of characters!) They face an uphill battle to get their HEA. Will love be enough?? You are just going to have to read the book to find out! And I promise it is so worth it.

One quote that I feel sums up the whole book, maybe even the series is this...

"Sometimes the hardest situations make for the best happily-ever-afters."

(Gabriel’s POV):
“To answer your question, I’m here at the club because my little sister thought I should come out and meet someone.  To quote her, I’m ‘getting mean as hell and need a piece of ass.’”
Madison laughs, a low and husky sound. 
“Do you?  Need a piece of ass?”
She sounds anxious. And interested.
I hold her gaze.
“More than you can imagine.”
I slide my hands from her back down to her ass, cupping it, squeezing it. 
“And I like yours,” I add.  I’m being cocky again, but she seems to like it. 
She practically purrs as she leans into me even closer, her nose almost touching mine. Her lips hover so close that I can feel them.
She slides her hands down to my ass, gripping it in her fingers. 
“Yours will do.”
The air hangs heavy between us, charged and electric.  Our eyes are locked and we each pause, waiting for the other to make a move.
The anticipation is killing me. 
I take a breath.
Then she takes one.
Her lips graze mine and her mouth smells like mint.  And then before I can think another agonizing thought, she covers my mouth with her own.
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Courtney Cole is a novelist who would eat mythology for breakfast if she could. She has a degree in Business, but has since discovered that corporate America is not nearly as fun to live in as fictional worlds. She loves chocolate and roller coasters and hates waiting and rude people.
Courtney lives in quiet suburbia, close to Lake Michigan, with her real-life Prince Charming, her ornery kids (there is a small chance that they get their orneriness from their mother) and a small domestic zoo.
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