Published by St. Martin's Griffin on November 10th 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Buy on Amazon
I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
When Sloane Avery stops to help a stranded driver, she finds more than a broken down car on the side of the road. Luke Evans is faster and sexier than her Maserati, but with her heart still on the mend, sheÔÇÖs not interested in taking him for a test drive. Despite their initial disdain for each other, emotion and passion simmer, complicating their fragile friendship. But when a tragic loss and devastating betrayal send them spiraling, their growing love isnÔÇÖt enough to save them.
That was five years ago, practically a different lifetime and definitely a different Sloane. Before sheÔÇÖs been hardened by booze, sex, and as much distance as she could get from the past. Now, called home on a family emergency, sheÔÇÖs determined to hold onto her heart the next time she sees Luke.
Except SloaneÔÇÖs not the only one whoÔÇÖs changed. LukeÔÇÖs turned his life around. Only the reappearance of Sloane and the reminder of his biggest mistake can put a dent in his plans. Luke is set on fixing what heÔÇÖs broken. But with her emotions boiling to the surface, Sloane needs to decide if falling in love is lifeÔÇÖs greatest gift or its cruelest joke.
Newly published author Jamie Howard’s knocks us upside the head with an intensely stirring read in Until We Break. Howard introduces us to Sloane and Luke, teenagers in a beach town community who encounter each during the summer break. There is contention between them from the start as they are quick to judge each other and neither claim to like what they see. Between assumptions ( whether right or wrong), they both hold back on their true feelings, and in some cases simply lie. I spent a fair portion of the time frustrated with both characters, but still hoping to see their true feelings exposed. Luke has an appalling family situation and when one of the worst things that could happen to him transpires, the push and pull between them amplifies. We are left with a ÔÇ£Part OneÔÇØ cliffhanger that will steal your breath ( you know, the kind that makes your stomach clinch). Going into Part Two my heart was aching and it became clear to me that IÔÇÖd be finishing this book in one sitting. I thought about trying to ÔÇ£put it down at the end of the next chapterÔÇØ but I couldnÔÇÖt do it. HowardÔÇÖs provides addictive reading material and gives really good reasons to hang in until the end.
The story picks up 5 years later with a vastly different Sloane returning home at her grandmother’s plea. Sloane is estranged from her parents and not on good speaking terms with her sister Blaire and in both cases, sheÔÇÖs not being unreasonable. The premise in Part Two is centered on Blaire trying to get her sister “back” and once again in the family fold. The hurt and anger she experienced at 18 wiped out the naive and sensitive girl she was. Blaire and Luke now team up to try to ÔÇ£shockÔÇØ – antagonize her – to the point that she’ll cave in and grant forgiveness all around. Sloan warns them off and in the ensuing chapters, we watch them chip away at each other. So, although we get a sassy and snarky Sloane, sheÔÇÖs clearly B.R.O.K.E.N. She ÔÇ£turns offÔÇØ her feelings so that sex isnÔÇÖt about love and love has nothing to do with her family. She carries a badge of loneliness that is quite heartbreaking and the distrust with Luke and Blaire intensifies. Knowing what we know it’s almost cruel the way they ÔÇ£try to make her breakÔÇØ and it’s for not entirely altruistic reasons. There is a particularly poignant moment where hot tears poured down my face. IÔÇÖll call it the ÔÇ£kitten and rainbowsÔÇØ incident. I’m clearly #TeamSloane. YouÔÇÖll read it and youÔÇÖll know it, and then youÔÇÖll have to wait to see how it ends.
Until We Break is one of my top angsty reads for the year and one of the best New Adult stories that IÔÇÖve experienced in a while. There are some very funny moments, and some sexy ones too that counter the anguish. One thing is certain, the lack of communication causes a lot of heartbreak and you have to be willing to take a chance or you could end up with nothing. IÔÇÖm looking very forward to the follow-up Until ItÔÇÖs Right where one of the most unlikely likable characters from Until We Break will hopefully get an HEA.
5 Stars and Recommendation!
~Review by Cyndi
Debut author Jamie Howard spends her days as a legal and compliance specialist. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Art from Ramapo College. When she’s not tapping away at the keyboard, you can find her devouring books and perfecting her gaming skills. She lives with her husband, son, and three dogs in New Jersey, and is almost always awake early enough to see the sun rise, even on the weekends.
WHERE TO PURCHASE