Josephine Clark is trapped. A harrowing past haunts her every time she looks in the mirror, and she can’t escape the violence of her everyday life. More and more, her thoughts turn to Evan Salinger, the boy she knew in high school. The boy they called a mental case. A loner. A freak. The boy who seemed to know things no one could know. For a few short weeks, Jo had found perfect solace in Evan’s company, sneaking every night to meet him at the local pool. In the cool of the water and the warmth of Evan’s arms around her, Jo had tasted something close to happiness.
Cruel circumstances tore them apart, and four years later, the sweet memory of their time together is dissolving under the punishing reality of Jo’s life now. Evan seems like a fading dream…until he reappears at the moment she needs him most. Guided by Evan’s strange intuition, they flee her small Louisiana town, running from police and criminals alike, and Jo begins to suspect there is something more to his sudden return than he admits.
Over twelve days across America’s heartland, deep secrets come to light, buried pasts are unearthed, and the line between dreams and reality is blurred as Evan and Jo fight to hold on to their soul-deep love, and discover that there is more than one way to save a life.
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I finished reading this breathtaking book at 1:30 a.m. I even woke up thinking about it. My heart is SO full after finishing this beautiful story. It was compelling. Brilliant. Intoxicating. THIS BOOK. It simply was everything my literary heart and soul NEEDED. At a time where no book was speaking to me? This one spoke to my soul.
“I didn’t save you. You weren’t drowning.”
“True. But you didn’t know that.”
Josephine (Jo) Clark can’t escape her past. It’s etched in her skin as a reminder. Jo is used to being the new girl at school. However, she always takes control. She won’t give it up like she did those years ago. Everything is how she wants it. When she wants it. Evan Salinger is the school freak. No one touches him. He’s taunted. Made fun of. Belittled. Jo cannot comprehend why such a beautiful boy is looked at as the town leper. She seems to want to know more. Eventually she finds herself at the same time, same place as Evan. Little does she know that the chance meeting by a pool is the spark to change her life. Completely.
“It doesn’t happen to guys like me, either. Believe me. No one touches me.”
Evan recognizes something in Jo. His heartbeat. His soul. He is lighter around her. The pain? It goes away when she is near. His soul heals in her presence. And Evan? He makes her want to open up.TO LIVE. To love. You watch these two people that have never received love, GIVE it. It’s beautiful. Powerful. Inspiring. Their love shattered their past. But devastating circumstances ultimately push them apart. And this absolutely will break you heart. But we all know love endures. And Evan finds Jo. Years later. They embark on a journey where it’s easily seen that love doesn’t know time nor circumstance. Their love never faltered. It never wavered. A love like theirs is never-ending. Limitless. Immeasurable. Everlasting. Their love? It’s constant. Their love simply never surrenders.
“How you’re looking at me right now. This is why I’m here.”
“You might not think I’m ruined.”
“You’re not ruined.”
Evan Salinger. My love for you is relentless. Will I ever meet a literary soul as beautiful and pure as him? His love transcends. You FEEL his love in everything. His words. His actions. His heart. As Jo and Evan travel, so much comes to light. They learn that through every life obstacle, love always saves. And their love? Saved them from the most of all. Themselves.
“I let go. The shields guarding my heart lowered. Evan wasn’t taking, he was giving.”
Can we talk about the writing? The writing is spellbinding. The author’s prose is so mesmerizing. Her meticulous words are deep and meaningful. Her words are of brilliant precision. It’s as if every single word is deliberate as she breathes life into the soul of her characters just by their words. Their special words. THIS book? This is WHY I read. Why I spend my free time lost in the pages of a book. She has this innate ability to touch you. To MOVE you. This story? It means so much more to me than anyone will ever know.
“I’ve moved beyond hows and whys. I just want to be.”
“Can I, Jo? With you? Or is it too much?”
The author truly gives a VOICE to her characters. A voice to all the people that have always been shunned and told they don’t matter. This story is for anyone that has been told they are insignificant. But the author demonstrates with her writing that we all matter. Our existence matters. And this big special world needs us. Evan is such a special soul. This story attests to the good and bad in this world. It reminds us that no matter what we are all worthy of love. All worthy of grace and forgiveness.
“You love me?”
“Can you feel it?”
“I hoped...that you did.”
How To Save A Life was one of the most inspirational and thought provoking books I’ve ever read in my life. It’s a story of selfless love and the resilience of the human spirit. You are overwhelmed in heartache as much as it astounds you with its beauty. My review is vague on the plot as you must live through their story. These two brave souls will captivate you with their unforgettable story. They loved loudly, without regard. Isn’t this how we should all love?
“I was the beneficiary of your radiance.”
Emma Scott is a writer, marathon runner, and caffeine addict, who lives and writes in the California Bay Area. She has two smart, feisty little girls, a super-supportive husband, and is a demonstrated fan of the Oxford comma. She is also an unabashed Star Wars geek and comic book enthusiast who fell into romance writing when a writing contest prompt turned a 1000-word flash story into a full-blown novel. She also writes epic fantasy that suffers an epic word count.
She hopes you enjoy her work, encourages readers to leave feedback, and thinks it's amusing to write about herself in the third person.
My third novel in the City Lights series (set in Paris) is called Beside You in the
Three book besties who love to read and discuss books. We are addicted to all kinds of romance with Alpha Hero's, Kick-ass Heroine's and plenty of angst.
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