I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
“Hearts don’t make sounds when they break, but there’s pain-God, there is pain.”
If there is one thing I can say about this series is that it is highly emotional. Shame was no exception. Finally we are given Lisa’s story. This was a sad, tragic, beautiful story that is sure to capture hearts of those who are fans of this series.
“...the thing about running, the thing about trying to start over-eventually that hope is dashed by your past coming up to greet you like the fires of hell.”
Shame is dark. It’s twisted and heartbreaking. Lisa’s past will leave you stunned. Her spirit is broken. The Lisa we have seen in the previous books is nothing like you thought. We were always given a glimpse of her past. Of her secret, but it is not revealed until now. Oh and this secret? It’s a heavy one. Her past is shameful and you completely understand why Lisa chooses to be in the present. Her past will only bring her pain. Lisa didn't feel love. She wasn't capable of it. Did not have the desire. But then? She meets Tristan. And soon learns he is forbidden. But the heart does not listen. It never does.
“...and for the first time in my life, I wanted wrong. I wanted the bad. I wanted it more than truth. Give me the lie. Just give me her.”
“The broken pieces are the prettiest ones, Lisa. The demons, the proudest scars.”
Tristan. He was so bad. But I loved him anyway. His intention with Lisa was horrifying. But you understand. As the darkness lived inside him as well. But his heart is so torn as it wants nothing more than to feel for Lisa. Vague much? There is a reason for that. There is a reason why the synopsis is the way it is. Shame has so many twists and turns. Lies, betrayal, pain comes to light. The past and present collide and shatters the hearts of both Lisa and Tristan. Everything you think you know, forget about it. Because you don’t.
“But with Lisa? I had no control; the madness she created in me stirred parts of my should that I hadn’t known existed until now.”
While I am so glad we got to learn about Lisa’s past, it was not my favorite in the series. I expected to see Lisa’s strength. I was hoping we would see it and there was a glimpse of it towards the end. For someone to endure the past that she did, it takes an amazing person. A strong individual. I just wish this shined through a bit more. I think what has pulled me so much towards this series is the flawless writing. The journal entries? Genius. These were my favorite part. You must read to experience these. The author has a true talent of weaving an incredible story while evoking emotions you never thought were possible just by reading a book. Simply raw emotion.
“She was afraid of the darkness he’d brought out in her almost as much as she was afraid of the light that she was still unable to reach.”
Is this really the end? I have thoroughly enjoyed this series. I can easily say put this series at the top of my all time favorites. Shame is a nice addition to the series as all the lies and darkness finally reveals itself. The entire story and lives of these unforgettable characters comes full circle.
I'm still a little confused as to my feelings towards this story...
Lisa was being stalked and harassed through letters and experienced break-ins at her dorm room. At about 50% I figured it out, and then until the time she figured it out I was yelling and huffing and puffing out loud at her for being so blind, sorry Lisa. There's nothing more frustrating when they can't see it. Is that what the author wanted to pull from her readers? I really have no clue, but good on you for it, Rachel, my child really believes I'm insane now. And speaking of insane... OMG Taylor! He was quite the piece of work! Sick or not, he was f'in despicable! Seriously messed up, horrible human being!
I must admit I was a little preoccupied with the thoughts of plots in my head (like what exactly did Tristan have planned for Lisa before he fell for her and what exactly is the deal with Jack?), rather than paying attention to the falling in love of Lisa and Tristan. I don't think I really liked him for her. The whole situation of who he was was just a little too weird for me. I really did wonder if she could overlook that part in the long run. I guess when it's true love, anything is possible? Yes that is a question, cause to heck if I know what that's all about. Good luck with that, Lisa.
I LOVED that I got more of the protective, smart asses of Gabe and Wes. Even though I still think it's a bit weird they put video cameras INSIDE Lisa's dorm room. Could they have not just aimed them at the windows and doors from the outside? Either way, I loved that they were there for Lisa, although I thought her girlfriends should have been there for moral support. Us girls need to stick together!
Now, even though there was a little too much drama at the end of the book, it was also exciting. Again, this goes back to my being confused over my thoughts about the book, obviously. I like a little suspense in my love stories, this had it. And now the whole gang is happy-in-love, little Lisa will no longer be the 3rd wheel. No book in this series will ever beat Ruin (awww Wes!) for me, but if you're a fan, you need to read Shame!
It was hard to explain the way he spoke to me; at times he was flirtatious and well… happy. Other times? It seemed like he was fighting another side of himself, one that was more reserved, uptight, controlled. And if you were to ask me which side scared me the most? I’d say both. Because both sides were dangerous to me — both pushed a person like me past the point of no return. His seriousness made me curious; his flirtation made me want more.
“Just dinner?” I asked. “Isn’t that against the rules?”
“Yeah, well…” He glanced down briefly before flashing a sensual smile, his eyes dilating. “…it seems to be an impulse I can’t really control around you.”
“Control’s overrated, you label-making fool.”
At that he laughed, a rich chuckle that had my entire body relaxing and heating at the same time. I took a step toward him and smiled. “So, rule-breaker, where are we going?”
He grabbed his messenger bag and keys. “You’ll see.”
“Cryptic.” My eyebrows arched as I crossed my arms over my chest. “This isn’t going to turn into one of those six o‘clock news things where the crazy professor takes the girl out then buries her in the woods, is it?” I tried to sound like I was joking, but the minute the words left my mouth, it was no longer funny. Suddenly, I realized how stupid it would be to go with him. I knew nothing about him, nothing at all!
He smiled, tilting his head toward me. “Why am I getting the sudden urge to pull out a list of character references?”
“Because I just scared myself,” I admitted out loud.
“You want my social security number?” He winked. “Credit score? First grade class photo? Oh, and by the way, in first grade I was nominated most likely to own a pet store… so, if you aren’t okay with that, we probably shouldn’t continue this.”
“Because you liked pets?”
“I wanted to own a lizard farm.”
I covered my mouth with my hands and nodded solemnly. “All little boys have dreams.”
“A bully crushed mine when he told me lizard farms don’t exist.” He shook his head. “In second grade I was voted least likely to succeed, on account that I didn’t speak for the entire year.”
“Why’s that?” I took another step toward him.
He took another step in my direction and shrugged. “It took me a while to get over the lizards.”
“So you stopped speaking?”
“It was more of me trying to make the public aware of my outrage.”
“Ah, like lizard strike.”
“I made shirts.”
“Tell me, professor, is that when the label-making started?”
“No.” He nodded toward the door and started walking. I followed, genuinely interested in what he was going to say and hating that it was possible he was stringing me along only to go all cold-crazy-psycho on me again. “That was an entirely different situation.” He pulled the door open.
“What? No more stories?” I asked.
“Dinner.” He shrugged, his eyes a stormy gray. “I’ll tell you at dinner.”
“My trump card. Label-maker stories. You know, I do actually know how to romance a woman.”
“Well...” I cleared my throat and broke eye contact. “…since I’m your student, I’ll just take your word for it.”
“Right,” he said quickly then repeated, “Right, shall we?”
“Lead the way.” I forced a smile and tried to remember that this was dinner, nothing romantic, just my very sexy professor once again apologizing for being a jackass during class.