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Chasing Shade Kindle Edition
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As soon as this hit the shelves, I ordered it, because, after all, we all know I love Sommer.
I knew, from reading her blog, that she was going for something a little different this time around. To say this surprised me is a bit of an understatement.
As with all her books, it's a journey of self discovery. This one went a little further into the dark side than I expected. HOWEVER, she handled with delicacy and diplomacy, always managing to find the balance between the dark and the light.
When Betsey rescues Archie from another night of sleeping in his dilapidated truck, she had no idea that she was changing both their lives completely. And when Archie accepts her offer, he has no idea that he'll have to rescue her right back. But isn't that the way legendary relationships are formed? Betsey's living in denial of her past, moving forward without thinking of what brought her to where she is. It's only when Archie gets around her defences that everything comes crashing back. That's when we get to the true heart of the story.
Like all couples in Ms. Marsden's work, they have unbelievable chemistry. The writing is funny and poignant, yet brilliantly simple. More importantly, it's honest. The dialogue is real, the emotions so close to the surface, it was like I knew them myself. Add in the hot-as-always sex and it's another home run for this author.
PS - the title? Absolutely SPOT ON. And I'm so glad she explained it. :P
Archie Rader was running away from a past that had left him broke, angry, hurt, betrayed, and alone when he ran over a hair piece in the middle of the road. That led him to Betsey Smith who was hiding out from a past that nearly destroyed her. The victim of a brutal crime, she had no one to count on except the small pseudo family she had built herself.
For Archie, “being homeless and drifting had not been in his game plan for this year. Settling down, starting a family, being a grown-butt man…that had been his plan.” He was “At least six-foot three, he had dark-dark-brown hair and pale blue eyes.” Betsey noticed him the moment he walked into the diner where she was a waitress. Archie noticed her too “There was something almost painfully real and honest and kind about Betsey Smith. Definitely a when-a-life-hands-you-lemons woman.”
When Betsey discovers how bad off Archie is she immediately helps him find food, a job, and a place to live without a second thought. Archie can’t believe the kindness from this stranger and it makes him feel a connection to her. Their attraction is almost immediate and extremely powerful, which makes each of them think it couldn’t possibly be real. Betsey sees how hurt Archie is and is convinced that she can only bring him pain. She doesn’t think that she is good enough for him or deserves someone like him. Archie believes that she is just what he needs with her kind soul, which makes him desire her even more.
Archie is a true “knight in shining armor” because he doesn’t try and save her. Instead he is there for her, by her side, asking her what she needs and giving her the space to do it. She is able to lean on him, talk to him, ask him questions, and go at her own pace. When she is faced with a tough decision about her past, Archie becomes her safe haven, when she is in his arms it feels like home and she finds strength in that, that she didn’t think she had. As they each try to let go of their pasts, will they be able to build a future? A future that is real and true? Is it possible to have instant love that will last? Is there such a thing as happily ever after when there was no “time” to fall in love?
I loved reading my first Sommer Marsden’s book, it didn’t disappoint me at all. It took me less than one day to read it because it kept me so engaged. The author keeps a steady pace with the exception of one chapter that felt rushed. The characters are strong, complete with great background stories, feelings, and sexual tension. The author writes vividly and it feels extremely authentic.
I wasn't a huge fan of this story... The idea behind it, sure, was ok, and while the location of the story wasn't the worst I've read... I just had a hard time getting on board with it.
Archie ends up at a diner, down on his luck, and is immediately drawn to Betsey -- who has demons in her past that have decided to come out and play. Knowing that her little trailer community is in need of a handy man, Archie ends up getting a job there with the help of her. Betsey and Archie fall into a quick relationship. They live so close to one another that her nightmares wake him, even, and he goes to the rescue.
<i>It took an enormous amount of courage to ask him</i> [to go to bed with her]
My response? Well yes, because he's a stranger. He heard you screaming and rushed over. You would be safer with a teddy bear.
I have to say, though, that (eventually...) their dialogue and playfulness was fun -- my problem was simply the timeline.
The 'story' behind the title is based off of something that Betsey says: "...just trying to stay out of the bad stuff. Trying to stay cool and live a good life and..."
I think that Sommer had a great idea; it just didn't follow through the way it had potential to.
Main Characters: Archie and Betsey
New to this author? Yes
Page Turner: No
HEA: (view spoiler)
Love Story: 7
Stand Alone: Yes
Overall I was depressed reading the story, sad that someone with a personality as bright as Betsey had to endure so much growing up. She had one bad thing happen to her and her life went on a spiral. I have seen it happen to people and it just makes me sad. I don’t particular love reading about it, bc I was to be excited when I read, not much for the sad reads. Archie was adorable, he came to her aid when she was sick / crying / upset. He was great and he is what kept the story going for me. At the same time, I was so sad, I kept thinking that the author could have just written in a loyal puppy and had the same story almost. I don’t know I guess it evoked the feelings that the author was going for so that is what my rating is based on just not my cup of tea.
Most recent customer reviews
Standalone with HEA. This is a story about a young couple who seemed a lot older than they actually were.Read more