Tuesday, September 1, 2015

[Blog Tour] Guiding Lights by Jessica Florence (Review + Giveaway)

Guiding Lights by Jessica Florence
Published August 20th, 2015
New Adult Contemporary Romance
He sings of suffering. His eyes hold the pain of living in sorrow.
The moment our gaze meets recognition flares within.
We are tortured souls drifting in a sea of darkness.
He knows I have secrets that I'll never tell.
I am numb
I am broken
I am dirty
I can never be the guiding light through the darkness he thinks I am.
I have forsaken my past, I rely on keeping myself shut off.
But he has secrets too, secrets that would destroy everything I have left.
I wish things were different, that maybe we could be each other's lifeline.
But destiny drags us down like an anchor.
The broken can only drift in the sea barely staying afloat

Get your copy!


My thoughts:

This is a beautiful story about two broken souls that recognize each other in the dark and together find their way to the light. The story is very gritty and powerful, it's a romance but it still has that darker quality of deep emotions that goes beyond the romantic relationship. 

The book is written in first person, from Nera's point of view. Nera is twenty three but has experienced enough horrors for two lifetimes, and that has left her broken and afraid of trusting people. She feels the need to hide from life and for a while, Durness, Scotland has been the perfect hiding spot.  There she works as a bartender in a pub called “Spurtle” which is own by Evan, and lives at a B&B owned by his wife, Aggie. Evan and Aggie are good people and have taken Nera in as a daughter. They really care for her and that warmth they bring to her life is exactly what Nera needs. I enjoyed their characters a lot and I think Nera deserved to have people like them in her life. 

The thing about Nera's dark past is that you don't know right away what happened to her. You know she went through something horrible and since the very first page her past becomes the mystery you want to solve. I really liked this aspect of the book, it added suspense and allowed for a lot of character development for Nera. 

One night, at the pub, a really handsome singer named Wolfe, takes the stage and bares his soul through his music. His voice and heart-felt lyrics strike a chord with Nera and she realizes she's found another broken soul. A little shaken up by his performance, Nera goes outside to regain her bearings and the singer goes after her to make sure she's okay. I really liked this first scene between them, it really showed the connection between since the very beginning. 

Wolfe is a mysterious character, he has this kind of bad-boy vibe but he's also incredibly sweet to Nora and I really enjoyed their relationship, especially at the beginning when they were at such ease with each other. The connection they shared was pretty much instantaneous, but their relationship grows little by little throughout the book. The secrets Wolfe withholds from Nora are intense and I understood why he had trouble sharing them, but it drove me insane that he took so long to come clean when he was clearly willing to do just about anything to get through to her. 

What I liked the most about Nera was that she was a bookworm. That made her more relatable to me and I giggled a lot when reading about her nerdy clothes and her fangirl-ish love for erotica authors. It was something I wouldn't have expected from her and that gave her a lot more dimension.

The thing that bothered me the most about this book was the accent. I get that it's supposed to be set in Scotland, but I think it would've been easier for me to get into the story if the dialogues weren't written with Scottish accent, it would've been enough if it just said the characters had an accent, but with everything written like that I had a really hard time trying to figure out what they were saying and that prevented me from fully immersing myself in the book. 

Overall, I think this is a powerful story about allowing yourself to be happy even when things have been rough. I'd recommend it to anyone looking for a darker contemporary romance, especially to people who enjoy accents and books set in Scotland, because if you're into that I'd bet that you would fall head over heels for Wolfe! 



About the author

Jessica Florence makes her home in Southwest Florida where she runs her own business, and of course writing! She one day after reading a book a day for a year just sat down and started writing, thus finding a new amazing hobby that she was looking for, for years, and that was also very therapeutic. 
She spends her days reading, writing, watching TV, working, playing with her cute as hell baby, and black German Shepherd Rogue aka Rogue-i-bear, and of course tormenting her husband ;)
She also enjoys taking naps, bubble baths, eating pickles like candy, and having Harry Potter marathons.

Don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops for more reviews and amazing content!

Blog Tour Schedule
August 21
What Is That Book About - Guest Post
Books Unhinged - Review
August 22
  The Dark Realm - Excerpt
Lostin Ever After  - Review
August 23
Coffee Books & Art - Excerpt
Textteaser - Review
August 24
Works of Fiction - Review
August 25
Mischievous Reads - Playlist
August 26
Greyland Reviews - Excerpt
August 27
Roxy's Reviews - Excerpt
Evermore Books  - Playlist
August 28
FMR Book Grind - Review
JordansBookReviews - Excerpt
This Literary Life  - Review
August 29
August 30
Lita's Book Blog - Review
Book-Lover - Excerpt
deal sharing aunt  - Interview
The Book Hookup  - Review
August 31
Oh My Growing TBR - Excerpt
September 1
Alpha Book Club - Excerpt
Word Forward  - Review
Love Us Some Books  - Review
September 2
Pages Abound  - Review
G & T IndiĆ© Cafe  - Excerpt
Ashley Book Blog  - Review
September 3
Between The Lines  - Review

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