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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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Two years after Jake's death, in an effort to move forward, Sadie decides to take the first step towards healing. Jake was an organ donor so Sadie reaches out to all of the organ recipients so she can meet the people who now have a piece of Jake in them. The last person she plans to meet was the man that has Jake's heart, Alexander McBride.
Alexander McBride comes across Sadie when she arranges to meet up with him on Tybee Island, where he lives a quiet life, far removed from the one he used to have. They end up crossing paths with each other without knowing who the other is. Sadie is very attracted to Xander (Alexander) and it is a very troubling feeling for her, it feels like she is cheating on her husband - just having lustful thoughts of another man.
Xander thinks she is the most beautiful woman he has met and is completely enamored by Sadie. After they realise who the other is, the bond between them becomes even stranger. As Sadie struggles to deal with all the new feelings and emotions she is having with Xander, he too is struggling with his own demons. He has never felt worthy of receiving his life saving heart transplant and he thinks that if Sadie knew the truth she would run as far away from him as she could.
This was a beautiful story rich in emotion and feeling. Two people who have had very different lives and back stories but they have one thing in common that bonds them together. J.L. Mac weaves a heart wrenching tale that portrayed the true sorrow that people go through in instances of death and grief.
I. Felt. Everything.
Then, her family decides that maybe getting her to meet the organ recipients who benefit from her husband's death could help her heal.
She hates the idea but in the end she agrees to meet three. One of them is Alexander McBride. From the moment they meet she feels something for Zander which she tries to deny. She feels guilty about thinking about him but she also feels like maybe he can be the one to make her feel alive again.
Zander doesn't feel he deserves the heart he carries now and he doesn't think he should be attracted to the widow who is still hurting from her loss but he can't seem to say no to his heart.
This is a story of healing with the loss of your soulmate and maybe having a second chance at love.
Sadie was very bitter, she was awful to her family at the beginning of the book and only with Zander's help she starts becoming the person she used to be. I don't even want to think about what she went through.
Zander was strong, determined but was vulnerable too. He had treated this new heart in the best possible way he could, changing his lifestyle completely. I was rooting for Zander to break down Sadie's walls because he deserved to be loved too.
I almost felt like maybe Jake was helping them find each other.
Sadie's mom also won my heart, her behavior with Zander was just what he needed.
"The connection I feel to this woman was so instant. I’ve never felt anything like it. Something about her, about me, about the situation that we find ourselves in—if I believed in fate, I’d say that’s exactly what it is. If fate exists, if it’s real, I would say that somehow our journeys are the same."
That long plot summary basically gives you the just of what this book is about. What I am about to tell you, is everything I think J.L. Mac did exceptionally well in her latest release, Vital Sign.
Sadie Parker has lost her husband Jake, the love of her life, childhood friend, awkward teen frenemy, high school and college sweetheart, her first and last as far as she was ever concerned. J.L. Mac makes you feel ALL of that. Sadie adores her husband and it's evident in every considerate thought and care that she takes with Jake and I got that from just the prologue. Jake may not be a living breathing character for very long but he is written about so vividly that he really does take on a life of his own and I had no problem envisioning him or aching for the loss of such a beautiful love.
Sadie is dead inside and has been for the past two years. She is completely heartbroken over the happily ever after that was stolen from her in a split second. She is angry, bitter, and at times, a raging <>. She knows it. She owns it. As much as her family and Jake's family continue to try and pull her towards the light, she only withdraws further. Never was I annoyed by Sadie's behaviour. Some might think this story is more about her love affair with her dead husband but I would argue that. J.L. Mac makes you feel her desolation and grief over a love so deep that it would bring you to the brink if you were to lose it. She is devastated and lost and really just wants to close herself off from everyone but I never found her outright mean, she just wants to be left alone, clinging tightly to her past memories, terrified if she moves on with her life that these memories with Jake will slip away.
"How am I supposed to let go of Jake if there are pieces of him still out there, living on in some perfect stranger."
Sadie and Jake's family stage an intervention and convince her to meet some of the recipients that benefited from Jake's organ donations in hopes that it will spark some life back into her. Basically Sadie just goes through the motions to appease both families while jealousy continues to mount over the people who get to live because of Jake's death, that is, until she meets Alexander McBride. Now, you would think that it might be a little sickening for an attraction to take place between a widow and the man who now has her dead husband's beating heart in his chest... uhmm, hello, the skeptic in me would question if she really cares for him or is she morbidly trying to recapture something of her deceased spouse? J.L. Mac sets this up brilliantly and in a way that never turned me off or left me questioning the authenticity of their desire.
"I kept that heart safe before, Zander's heart, when it was Jake's, and my reflexes haven't changed. If anything, they've intensified."
While Sadie struggles with her own guilt that she is betraying Jake's memory over an attraction to another man, Zander is struggling with his own self-loathing. He is disgusted by events from his past, he is not proud of himself, his life or his family and feels undeserving of the second chance at life that was handed to him. Are lines blurred as these two struggle to take what they need from each other? Yes. Did J.L. Mac have me cringing occasionally and silently chanting, no, no, don't do that? Yes. But she writes these characters so extraordinarily well that you experience all of their desperation and misery alongside them and all you can do is support their need to protect one another from the demons that haunt them within their own personal hell while pushing each other towards their deserved happiness, regardless of how they get there. This story isn't neat and tidy, it's gut wrenching, soul searching and messy but it's also beautiful, inspiring and hopeful.
"He's my proof of life. My vital sign."
There a number of poignant moments in this book that take place between Sadie and her mother, between Sadie and Jake and between Sadie and Zander. I cried a number of times but prepare yourself for the big, ugly, snotty, heaving cry, because it's there, it's going to happen.
Most recent customer reviews
Read from May 05 to 06, 2014
Total loss of words here.Read more
And I still felt the anguish of the past when I read this
This is written in a way that tells your own story.Read more