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Where Lightning Strikes (Bleeding Stars Book 3) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 450 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Oh did Where Lightning Strikes strike me like a sucker punch: fast and furiously. After just a few pages, I was swept into this story with a force as strong as the wind. Captivated. Consumed. Controlled. I was all in—so much that it was difficult to tell where the story and I began, and ended. Body trembling. Breath holding. Fingers coiling. Eyes tearing. Lips quivering. Heart beating. Emotions bleeding. Mouth smiling.
Where Lightning Strikes is a penetrating force that permeated though me so quickly that I had to take a few breaks at first to reign in or try to suppress the flowing waterworks. My emotions battled with my brain to stay strong but were powerless as the tide pulled me into this powerful and poignant tale. Each wondrous word cut through me like a sword, willing my feelings to escape as they quickly splattered, crashing all over the pages. Tears cascading like waves hit almost immediately, never relenting the whole time. Heartbreaking. Hopeful. Happy.
I love Baz and Shea’s tale told in A Stone in the Sea and Drowning to Breathe so much—a story that will stay with me forever. With anticipation and anxiety, I could not help but wonder if I would love Lyrik and Tamar’s story as much. If this book would measure up to its predecessor, a duet that both hurt and helped my heart. Dare I say that I adored this story too…maybe even more?
Tamar ‘Red’ King. Red-haired, blue-eyed, petite, curvy, and inked. A perfect pin-up girl package. Beautiful. Sassy. Smart. Bartender at the bar owned by her bestie's uncle. She came to Savannah to escape her painful past, so devastating that she has sworn off men for good.
That is until Lyrik West turned her controlled and closed world upside down a year ago and hasn’t left her mind since.
“I sought safety from that storm in the walls I’d built up around myself…Yet somehow he kept reappearing at the fringes of my life, pushing and prodding and drawing me back into all those excited, convoluted feelings I didn’t want to feel. Lyrik West.”
Lyrik West. The lead guitarist of Sunder and panty-melting hot. Cocky. A manwhore. The ultimate alpha. Dark-haired and dark-eyed. Tall. Built. Covered in ink with art and words that reveal clues to a painful past, the tattoos telling more than words ever will. Women as bed-warmers—nameless, faceless vessels to ease only the physical needs.
Women did not matter. Except Tamar. Lyrik entered the Savannah bar one night with his band, Sunder, and saw the red-headed sassy siren who blew his mind away. Unforgettable. Tamar mattered. A year later when Lyrik is back with the Sunder band in Savannah, she still matters.
“Damn, I loved a girl who wasn’t afraid to speak her mind while her body told an entirely different story. That was the type of contradiction I craved. The push and pull. Hate bristling with want. That girl was a bundle of fireworks and I was certain we’d go boom.”
Like a hurricane, Lyrik and Tamar blew into each other’s lives. Their chemistry and need sparking an explosion with flames that have burned and still burn from ocean to ocean. With Sunder back in town, Lyrik and Tamar are combative once again with sharp tongues slicing insults at each other, masking the burning desire that’s brewing and ready to combust. Tamar hates and wants Lyrik. Her body sparks with need in his presence. Traitorous. Helpless. Heated. Alive.
“Why did I want him so badly? But I guess the saying was true. We always want what we shouldn’t have.”
As the lead guitarist for the popular worldwide and hot band, Sunder, Lyrik can have any woman he wants. Women throw themselves at him constantly. He is never with one—at least two women hang off of his arm and in his bed. One woman haunts his head. The spicy siren. Tamar.
“…Every time she told me I couldn’t have her, the need she stirred in me just grew. She was like a red-headed siren, circling and circling and circling me on unsettled waters until I was trapped in some kind of vortex.”
This story oozes angst, so much that Lyrik and Tamar’s addiction to each other becomes mine. I’m tethered to them, and can’t get enough.
The cat and mouse game they play is dangerous, hurling insults like missiles that penetrate with pain.
“I didn’t love women. But I wanted one. I wanted her. Tamar King. We had a love/hate relationship. I loved messing with her and she loved to hate me for it.”
For Tamar, Lyrik is consuming her. This beautiful and complex man is a mystery that she wants to solve.
“He pressed my hand to my chest. It felt way too strong, and damn it, his heart had to have been beating just as hard as mine. Something flashed in those eyes. Something soft. That was all it took, and something soft inside me wanted to give. To give up and give it all.”
Hot and cold like the flu, burning like a fever. The temptation becomes too hard to resist. Eventually, even temptation has an expiration date.
“My tongue darted out and swept across my bottom lip. Dying for a taste. F it. Figured she was going to kill me anyway. My mouth came down on hers…My palm moved hot over that tat of temptation. The apple and the serpent…I wondered who of us was who.”
Two months in Savannah until Lyrik has to return to LA with Sunder. Two months to give in to temptation, the heat that flows between them like hot lava for over a year. Two months to claim every part of each other. Two months to forget the past—the pain—and focus on the present.
“She was like a bundle of fireworks just waiting for a match. Now I was standing in the flames.”
Lyrik and Tamar are kindred spirits. Two lost souls who have given up hope. Raw with regrets. Filled with emptiness. Void of emotion. Their pained pasts haunt the present, threatening the future.
My heart shatters, bleeding across the pages, tears that start as drops now flow freely. These characters? They are more, so much more, as they steal my soul.
“Sorrow…filling up that dreadful, hollow space. As if we somehow fit. Because the anguish in his voice? It promised he was as empty as me. Lonely recognized lonely. And my heart recognized him.”
Oh the feels. My heart. I’m not sure if it can take much more as it is shattered so much. I pray that it’s repaired soon.
Tamar and Lyrik are tethered to their painful pasts. Balls and chains. Both hold the keys to unlocking each other’s hearts that are barricaded by walls that are slowly crumbling. Piece by piece. Word after word. Kiss after kiss.
Tamar is scared and confused.
“I hated being this girl. Fearful and scared of emotions I didn’t want to feel. But that’s how this boy made me. Shaky and confused and losing the grip of the carefully constructed walls I clung to.”
Lyrik is trying to hold on to his heart, guarding it from girl who is so close to getting inside.
“Red was trying to take me places I didn’t want to go.”
I want to hug them both, as they are suffering from demons long locked up but waiting to be freed.
The desire that burns from the outside starts to seep its way into dangerous territory, close to the heart. Frozen hearts begin to thaw. Emotions begin to surface.
“Guard you heart. Too late. It belonged to him.”
Lyrik is healing Tamar, protecting her and helping her release the chains of the past that bind her. She wants to heal him too, release his demons.
“Regret. Sorrow. Lust. And a longing that nearly brought me to my knees. Desire trembled through my body. I wanted to crawl beside him. To discover every secret. Even though I got the crumbling feeling knowing him would be the end of me.”
Though Lyrik thinks he is dark and destined for sorrow in a self-induced prison, he is an instant light in Tamar’s dark life—a beacon of brightness to which she can't help but follow. He thinks he is unworthy.
I want to hug Lyrik hard and shove him to Tamar, shout that he needs her to heal him. She has the key to his heart…his happiness. He doesn’t see the light.
“I knew without a doubt that this girl didn’t need that. She needed no part of my black, filthy heart. She needed the good I couldn’t give.”
I’m torn apart inside. I don’t know how I have tears left, but they keep flowing. My heart keeps shattering. Over and over.
“My insides felt raw and achy and sore. As if I was bleeding out. Bleeding for this boy when he was only going to cut me deeper. God, this got messy and fast. And I knew better. I knew it all along.”
Hard. Where Lightning Strikes hits hard. Your heart is hit the hardest. Shattered…so many times. This book…a life changer. Soul-stealer. Heartbreaker. A must-read. Not just a rock star story but so much more.
Where Lightning Strikes spins your emotions around like a hurricane—anger, happiness, sadness, frustration, and most of all hope. Hope for a happily ever after. AL Jackson's perfectly penned words are poetic, poignant, powerful, and pull at your heart. Relentlessly. Your heart is tugged so hard when reading this story that it turns into an experience—an enthralling, emotional, and exceptional experience—with an immersion so gripping and gut-wrenching that you are rendered with a deep connection that remains long after you turn the last page.
Five stars are simply not enough for this emotional roller coaster ride. This beautiful and brilliant story stole everything. My heart. My soul. Every feel. I don’t know if this soul-wielding story will give them back. I don’t know if I want it to, as Where Lightning Strikes struck me hard with a book that is so devastatingly beautiful and brilliant. Imperfectly perfect.
5 but should be 10 beautiful, broken, brilliant, and imperfectly perfect stars
This is the first thought I had when I finished this book. A.L.'s writing is so lyrical and poetic, reading this story was like listening to a song, full of soothing notes but also surging crescendos.
I have been interested in Tamar from the first time we met her in A Stone in the Sea. She's obviously a feisty thing, with her bright red hair, colorful tattoos and perfectly made up face. She seems to have quite an aversion to rockers, or maybe it's just bad boys in general? Whatever it is, she was fiercely protective of Shea when Sebastian and his band, Sunder started coming into the bar she works in on a regular basis.
Now she needs to be fiercely protective of her own feelings when Lyrik West sets his sights on her. She's watched him every time he's come into the bar, always covered in women, always leaving with women. He's everything she knows she needs to stay away from, but for some reason she can't. Something has happened in her past that she's deeply ashamed of, something she's run away from and basically reinvented herself from the ground up. She knows Lyrik is dangerous to her, but the force of her attraction to him is stronger than the warning signals telling her to stay away.
Lyrik has been an enigma up until this point. He came across as the intense, strong, silent type in the first two books, but aren't those types the ones who cause the most trouble? There's something from his past as well that has caused him to close himself off from any type of relationship, anything involving feelings. All he can offer is a good time, one night of pleasure and then he's moving on to the next. Until Tamar. He knows one night with her won't nearly be enough. But he also knows he can't offer her anything long term, and nothing that involves emotions.
The path these two take to each other is not always pretty. Lyrik made me want to punch him in his junk on more than one occasion. Both of these characters are broken in their own ways, and trying to navigate a path forward is ugly at times and my heart broke on more than one occasion. But if you've read any of A.L.'s other books, you know that after she's torn your heart out of your chest, she will skillfully piece it back together, bit by bit, until it has been lovingly placed back where it belongs and your tears have turned from those sad, ugly ones to tears of happiness and contentment.
I'm not going to spoil the story by talking about what happens. I'd rather just gush about how impressed I am once again with A.L.'s writing. She weaves such heartfelt tales, invoking so many emotions from me that I'm wrung dry by the end, in the best of ways. Her stories flow so seamlessly, I get lost in each and every one. The emotions build slowly and steadily until you're so far gone in the story you don't realize you're completely invested in finding out what is going to happen with these two characters that have stolen your heart.
I have loved this series from book one. Lyrik and Tamar's story is just as incredible and emotional as Shea and Sebastian's story was. And I have a feeling that each of the books released in this series will continue to be just as amazing.
**ARC kindly provided by the author in exchange for my honest review**
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