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on November 28, 2012
It appears that 90+% of the reviews for this book are written by women, so I'll try to offer a slightly different perspective and conclusion that I hope will give men a reason to read the book.

First, I obviously liked the book a lot. It is well written overall, offers unique perspectives from the point of view of two women who couldn't be more different, and in the end weaves the two stories together in a way I didn't see coming at first (although, once the two character's stories start to merge, the ending becomes very predictable). I found the story engrossing, and it made me want to keep reading.

But be prepared to be depressed. This is a very depresssing story even though it ends on a hopeful note.

The story of Taylor, the young woman who flees a terrible home situation only to end up in an equally terrible life as a porn star, is heartbreaking and believable. The story of Allyson was much harder for me to believe. Here is a woman who has been happily married for several years to a man she loves deeply and who apparently treats her very well. Then, with just one discovery that her husband views porn on the internet, everything falls apart. Suddenly, she sees him as unfaithful, a cheater, a man who doesn't love her, a liar, a pervert and basically scum she wants no part of. And remember, all this is before she knows he is addicted. How can you go from feeling for many years that he treats her like gold to this overreaction? Did anything happen during the good years to lead her to feel she wasn't loved? Apparently not. So, for all those years, his addiction didn't seem to impact their lives together in the slightest. Why is the discovery that a man looks at porn (who hasn't?) such a life changing event for Allyson? Even the very religious President Carter admitted to feeling "lust in his heart," and his wife seemed to accept it so long as it wasn't acted upon.

The husband's addiction is revealed to Allyson a little at a time, each time with a profuse apology, no mean words of justification, and endless declarations that he loves her and it means nothing to him. He tries and tries to make it up to her. Yet her response, time and again, is to ask him if he thinks the woman he looked at is more beautiful than she is, prodding him to disprove his own words. What a Catch 22: answer no, and she thinks he's lying again; answer yes and she feels worse. His answer: yes, the woman is more beautiful than her, but Allyson has an inner beauty she can't match. Wow! Truly an unbelievable response. No man in his right mind who claims to love his wife would answer that way and throw fuel on the fire.

So her husband looks at porn and that makes Allyson feels justified in having her own affair with her real former boyfriend. But how can looking at porn be considered equally as bad as having a real life affair?

I found her reactions irritating and hard to believe. However, I will defer to the many women who reviewed the book and said that is exactly how they would feel, and I accept it as fact, since I'm not in a position to know.

Without revealing the ending, I again found it hard to believe that Allyson would change her very judgmental attitudes so radically without going through a gradual transformation.

That said, it was still a compelling storyline. And I learned something new about how differently women may react to things that most men don't view as a big deal. (A big thanks to the women reviewers here for making it clear that Allyson's feelings were realistic. I wouldn't have known otherwise.)

Definitely worth a read by both women and men.
15 people found this helpful
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on March 28, 2013
I am 42% into the book. Some reviews have mocked the damage and the distress that a wife feels when she realizes she is competing with porn. I was nervous picking up the book because my heart was deeply wounded by a husband who preferred fantasy women to a living person who had given up everything to be with him. The devastation is real and this author could have been in my mind and heart and bedroom during the time following the discovery and the year and a half I wrestled with demons before and after choosing to fight for my husband and his choice to fight for our marriage and actively deny his temptations. Ally struggled with exactly my struggles, and Jesse said and did things that mirrored my own husband's responses to my crushed spirit. What is also true, and not over the top, is the real despair and devastation with which the porn stars live. My own experience sent me to researching what I was fighting against. That research changed me from anger and bitterness to horror and grief toward the women who stole my husband's desire from me. They are just as much victims as I am. When I took my research to my husband and asked him if that is what he would want for his own daughter, he turned pale and it was evident that he was grieved by his contribution to the abuse of the girls he had viewed to arouse him! Though I haven't finished the book, I believe everyone needs to know the truth about this industry. It is wise to recognize that the world of porn destroys men, destroys marriages, destroys families, destroys the innocent and preys on the hurting and insecure. It is also encouraging to know that marriages can survive and even thrive after a betrayal like this. I'm thankful this author took the effort and risk to describe, with so much feeling, the experiences of hurting women in today's society.
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on January 31, 2017
*Spoilers*

As a mother who lost a child, I will say that I wished someone would have told me that this book may have triggers for someone who has been through a stillborn. With that said, the overall quality of the book is poor. I believe that this book is in desperate need of an editor, the characters are underdeveloped, and the plot has too many time jumps.

I enjoyed the overall story. However, I didn't really like Ally's story. I felt that she was a bit dramatic for some situations. As for Taylor, other than the vast time jumps... I really liked her story.

I'm not going to say if I recommend this book because it all depends on the reader. So, read at your own risk.
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on July 26, 2015
This book covered a difficult subject matter, but I didn't feel much of anything for Ally. Her character wasn't developed enough for me to empathize with her. I was able to empathize with Taylor somewhat. I don't know why I could empathize with Taylor and not with Ally, other than the chapters about Ally were more wordy and redundant. Though I understand what the author was trying to do by viewing pornography through different situations (two different characters), Ally's chapters did not mesh well with Taylor's chapters. Every time a different chapter began, it was as if I were reading a totally different book.
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on August 21, 2016
As an avid reader, this is honestly the worst novel I have ever read. Glossing over the topics it's trying to talk about. Absolutely refusing to use the language of a world it's trying to describe. Cocaine is not "cola" and the author clearly has no idea about it. Don't waste your money if this is a paid novel and don't waste your time if its free. This author is on my "never again" list.
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on June 3, 2017
Written by someone who has lived the words that she wrote. This review is given by one who lived and lost due to open on the computer. This should be awake up to all who think that it won't hurt. Cause it does. I was scared to read but kept pushing through to the end. Glad I did. There is help. He will guide you three it all if you just ask. Thank you for writing this book Ashley Weis.
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on January 18, 2016
This book was pretty terrible. If I was an atheist, this would NOT make me consider Christianity. The main character's attitude about porn was so bad. Yes, I think porn is bad. Yes, it can cause doubts to arise in a woman--but to completely drown yourself in insecurity and make silly assumptions before even thoroughly talking to your husband...NO.

And can we discuss the ending please? Because I'm not sure if the writer of this book was traumatized by someone in the porn-industry or just PLAIN hates it because the woman who was in that industry was so targeted. What happened to loving others? What happened to having an open-mind?

To judge her and blame her for her problems in her marriage...

After reading this book, I couldn't believe readers would give this story 5-stars! What was there to learn from the story?

NOTHING.
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on January 16, 2016
God works in mysterious ways; his wonders to perform.
Your story shows God's path for all parties. While going through them I'm sure it was chaotic and questions were asked as to why this or why that., But as we know; hindsight is always 20/20.
I am so pleased that your paths crossed and your marriage survived and your family grew.
It was very hard for me to put your story down. I would , more than once, let things go undone while I was reading.
God Bless
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on July 20, 2012
I read this book over a month ago but the issues still haunt me. I now have a better understanding of how a good girl can get enslaved in the porn industry. As I read this story I wept and prayed for the women in the world living this story. While the issues presented in this novel were traumatic, they are real--and ones the Christian community needs be aware of so we can minister effectively. Too long Christians have chosen ignorance or sheltered themselves while women are enslaved in the sex trade and need someone interceding for them. Thank you for rattling my comfort zone and opening my heart to the victims on both sides.
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on July 15, 2013
I found this book to be emotionally draining. The other tells the story of two woman who lives are destroyed by pornography. One because she discovered her husband is addicted to porn and the other because she becomes a porn star. This books shows the ugly truth behind the facade of porn. It is not vulgar, but does not shy away from making the reader uncomfortable. I cried many times with both women as their stories unfold. It is not an easy book to read, but definitely worth the time to read.
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