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Come to Me Recklessly (Closer to You) Paperback – April 7, 2015
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"I absolutely love reading books by A.L. Jackson. The impacts her intensely emotional journeys have on me are everlasting and can never be replicated. What she creates with each unique story continuously shocks me with how powerful written words can truly be. ~Best Sellers Best Stellars
"Oh...my...gosh. I am suffering from the MOTHER OF ALL BOOK HANGOVERS! Wow. Come to Me Recklessly by AL Jackson was pure perfection!!! A true work of art!" ~HEA Bookshelf
About the Author
A. L. Jackson spends her days writing in Southern Arizona where she lives with her husband and three beautiful children. She is the author of the Closer To You Series, including Come to Me Softly and Come to Me Quietly. She is also the author of Lost to You, When We Collide, Take This Regret, and Pulled.
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The story is told in alternating points of view, both past and present between Christopher and Samantha, so we get their feelings and emotions first hand. Samantha was raised in a strict household, being a Pastor's daughter. She and Christopher dated in high school but her family did not approve of Christopher at all, feeling he was a bad influence on her. Christopher is trying to deal with the aftershocks of his best friend Jared spiraling out of control from a family tragedy. Coupling this with outside influences and miscommunications, Christopher and Samantha are pulled apart and go their separate ways.
Fast forward 7 years and Samantha has just become a teacher's aide and is living with her boyfriend. She tries desperately to convince herself she is happy and doing what is expected of her. She runs into Christopher's sister Aly and her world comes crashing to a halt. All of the feelings she has tried so hard to bury for the past 7 years come bubbling up and even though she knows she shouldn't, she quickly becomes friends with Aly again and immerses herself in Aly's family. Of course this leads to the eventual first meeting between Christopher and Samantha. Christopher is truly awful to Samantha. First of all, he's with another woman and he says some really horrible, hurtful things to Samantha. Right then, I was like, "Whoa...back this bus up!" What has happened that has caused this horrible reaction from Christopher?? I couldn't wait to keep reading to find out about their past.
In typical AL Jackson style, she reveals the past slowly throughout the story, taking the reader from past to present and giving us both Christopher and Samantha's thoughts and feelings on what has occurred. It takes Christopher a while to finally realize what has been missing from his life for the past seven years, where he was constantly trying to fill the hole in his heart with an endless string of women, only to come to the conclusion that Samantha is the only one who can accomplish this.
It was very endearing to see how Christopher tries to regain Samantha's trust and how protective and possessive he becomes over her. She is still with her boyfriend and she has major decisions to make on where her heart really lies and what it is that she wants for her future. AL does a great job of bringing these two forward, slowly starting out as friends again before building the emotion and finally making them realize they can't live without each other. And finding out what happened in the past that tore these two apart? That nearly broke me! AL writes in such a way that I was completely drawn into the story and felt like I was standing in the room with Christopher and Samantha, watching everything unfold before my eyes.
If you are looking for a book that will run the gamut of emotions and put you through an emotional wringer, this book is for you! You will laugh and cry, your heart will hurt, your stomach will clench, you will have many "awww" moments! I know this quote will probably be repeated a thousand times in reviews for this book, but I have to leave you with this one from Christopher:
"What does it take to delete the past?
A thousand apologies?
A million regrets?
A litany of prayers?
If I shouted them, would you hear?
If I whispered them, would you believe?
If I fell at your feet, would you forgive?
If I asked, would you start again?”
I've probably said too much already but I can't help myself with this book!! This is must read!! Once you've read it I know that Christopher and Samantha will cement themselves in your heart.
In Aly and Jared’s story we saw that Christopher slept around and was not interested in a relationship. Come to Me Recklessly helped us understand why he was that way. I admit that he didn’t win any points with me early on in the book. Christopher was a wonderful brother, uncle, and best friend. However, the way he treated Samantha in the beginning was infuriating. What had she done to him to fill him with so much hate? As we learned more about his past with Samantha and saw a shift in his actions, I felt myself melting. She had meant everything to him and still did. There was a depth and beauty to their love that moved me and stole my heart.
I spent a good deal of this book wanting to jump into the pages and give Samantha a big hug. Christopher had absolutely devastated her, shattering her young heart and irrevocably shaping her future. Although she was in a committed relationship (with a controlling jerk), she had never even remotely felt the some passion as she had with Christopher. Her internal struggle was palpable. Samantha was still in love with Christopher, but how could she trust him again? The relationship between Samantha and her brother was heartwarming. Even though he was young, I loved that he completely understood her and encouraged her to follow her heart.
There were parts of this book that hurt deeply, but I can always trust Jackson to heal those wounds. The past and present scenes were intertwined perfectly to highlight the emotions of the story and cause me to wonder if Christopher and Samantha would be able to find their way back to each other. Christopher’s intensity and Samantha’s heart were what truly made the book for me. It was wonderful to spend time with Aly and Jared again and see how their lives intertwined with those of Christopher and Samantha. Come to Me Recklessly was a beautiful and powerfully emotional story. This book is the perfect addition to the Closer to You series.
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