Published by Headline Eternal on November 15th 2016
Genres: Dark Romance
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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.
JB Salsbury is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has captivated readers around the world. Her unforgettable new novel is a story of romance and suspense, with a twist no one will see coming . . .
What do you do when you wake up with no memory of what you did last night?
Lucas spent the first half of his life protecting himself from others, but now his own mind is his biggest enemy. He doesn't know what happens when the blackouts overtake him, but he can recall the feelings--the rage, the confusion, the fear. Thankfully the quiet life he's found in Payson, Arizona has kept the darkness at bay. Until his boss's estranged daughter shows up in town, asking questions she shouldn't and sparking a desire Lucas can't control. Getting close to Shyann is the best thing that's ever happened to him, but when his blackouts return, unleashing the truth he's battled so long to hide, he may just lose her forever . . .
It’s been all too long since I’ve read a J.B. Salisbury book. One thing I recall though is just how gritty and scary she can make a story line and Split is a great example. There are times this story made me more than anxious and I felt my stomach turn but at the heart of this is a love story. Albeit an unconventional one. It’s a fast read because, well I didn’t want to put it down. The mystery was too intriguing and I wanted to see if what I thought might be the twist or big gotcha was right (mostly)!
At the center is Shyann Jennings, a “failed” newby in the TV journalism industry. She returns home to regroup and rebuild the scorched relationship with her father and brother. She’s made herself an outsider by staying away for 5 years but she quickly gets that she has to make nice to earn money so she can leave again. Except there’s this guy she just can’t stay away from, Lucas. He works for her father so that makes them “off limits” to each other. That and Lucas’s erratic behavior has made him a loner. Shy and Lucas relate as outsiders in the community but they share a very charged pull to each other that’s more about chemistry.
What makes this story an emotional read is Lucas’s past. His history slowly unfolds and the flashback’s of the abuse he experienced is completely heartbreaking (with this there’s a possible trigger warning – just a caution that the abuse is extreme). This is the what and why that surrounds Lucas and his future. There’s confusion and chaos and a lot of drama in a very short time. Shyann’s experienced her fair share of heartbreak and it looks like including Lucas in her life will just add more – lots more and some I was surprised Shyann was able to move past. The story line really explodes when a person from Shyann’s past emerges.
A lot of the twists are driven by a cast of secondary characters driven by varying motivations; Gage *wink, wink*, Sam, and Trevor and of course her father and her brother Cody.
Under all the drama and ensuing emotions there’s a message of love & hope. Getting there is just a bumpy ride and the shocking aspects of the story line kept me completely enthralled (if not a little sick to the tummy with nerves and all). 4 stars and recommendation!
~Review by Cyndi
ÔÇ£You canÔÇÖt jump.ÔÇØ
She narrows her eyes on me. ÔÇ£Of course I can.ÔÇØ
ÔÇ£Is it safe?ÔÇØ
My grip on her grows tighter and she steps close enough that I can feel the heat of her breasts brush against my ribs. ÔÇ£Lucas, do you trust me?ÔÇØ
ÔÇ£No.ÔÇØ The word comes out on a shaky whisper.
A gentle grin softens her face and with both her hands she works to relax my hold enough for her to slip free. Seconds later she turns, takes four long strides, and disappears off the rock cliff.
A holler that can only be described as guttural exhilaration echoes off the canyon walls and slices through the trees.
I race to the edge and thereÔÇÖs nothing but a circle of white bubbles marring the once shimmering pond.
I wait for her to surface, and just when IÔÇÖm about to jump in and rescue her, her head pops up out of the water with a feral howl.
ÔÇ£That was amazing!ÔÇØ She waves at me. ÔÇ£The water is perfect!ÔÇØ
With adrenaline coursing through my veins, I allow myself a moment to wonder what it would be like to be as free as Shyann. Everything I do is weighed against the danger of doing it. The threat of blacking out always pulling me back to walk the safer, less risky side of any situation. But something about her makes me want to try harder, makes me want to take a risk like other twenty-five-year-old guys. The sound of her squealing lights a fire in my chest that has me wanting to jump.
Risking a blackout might be worth the few seconds of euphoria I havenÔÇÖt felt sinceÔÇªI canÔÇÖt remember.
I think of backing away and yelling for her to meet me at the truck, but something pulls me toward her. Part of me wonders if itÔÇÖs nothing more than wanting to be close, to keep her safe, because she belongs to Mr. Jennings and I owe him. But even as the thought enters my mind, so does another.
I want her to like me.
I want her to see me as brave.
I want to know what itÔÇÖs like to be normal.