Okay, Colleen Hoover can do no wrong in my book. Her stories are an immersive experience that will make you forget your real-world exists!
So when I finish a CoHo book, a lot of times, I’m completely wrecked. She has twisted me up and wrung me out, and I need a minute before I tackle another one. This one though, it was a really good balance of emotion, character development, and plot. I found myself in love with the characters and invested in their stories, but I feel like I could pick another one up right away this time!
Smiles. Tears. Love. Heartbreak. Found Family. Fantastic Story.
This book. Ugh…I cannot truly give this story the props it deserves, but I’m going to try.
This story follows Lily. The story is mostly told through the present day, but we do go back in time to understand her home life as a child. These flashbacks are told through written letters, which are emotional, raw, and revealing. She lives in a home where her mother is abused by her father, and her pain is heartbreaking. Through these writings we also follow the surprise relationship that develops between Lily and Atlas, a homeless boy squatting in her neighbor’s abandoned house. Lily’s present-day story follows her relationship with Ryle, her found friendship with Ryle’s sister, and her following her career dreams.
I cannot begin to express how incredibly amazing this story was. Colleen Hoover creates characters that are absolutely true to life. They are messy and complicated and full of emotion. She takes those people and places them in impossible situations and creates this beautiful story that you literally cannot put down.
Kenna has just been released from prison and then a transitional housing place, and is now moving back to the town she used to live in. With no family or friends, she feels alone in the world, and her focus is on getting the chance to meet the daughter she gave birth to and then immediately lost custody of due to her long incarceration. There are roadblocks for Kenna at every turn. She’s in a town that hasn’t forgotten the terrible thing she did, and the parents of her boyfriend that died have custody of her child. Can she find forgiveness for herself and from others?
Man, what is it about Colleen Hoover’s writing that just breaks me?? Ugly Love made me ugly cry. It was another wonderful book from Hoover’s amazing mind.
The story is told through present day and through Miles’ past. The narration alternates between Tate and Miles, and it unfolds in little pieces that make it impossible to put this one down. I literally read this in a day, and it’s been a long time since I have done that.
Okay. I started this book on 12/30/20, and I did not finish it before the new year. I DID, however, finish it on 1/1/21. I can, without a doubt, say that this is one of the best books I have read in 2020 and 2021!
Why you should read this book: ➜ A romance that will make you fall in love more than once throughout the story. ➜ A paranormal aspect that won’t spook you, although it might creep you out when you really think about it. ➜ A story that will grip you from the very start.
The telling of this story through present day, mixed with the book Lowen is reading made this such a suspenseful story. I loved how the plot unfolded through both stories, leaving me with my jaw hanging on so many occasions!
How I Felt:
Whoa. Seriously, Verity was just WHOA!
The Writing: I think that so many people have already discovered Colleen Hoover and her fabulous writing. To me though, she is still new. This is my second book by her and I am in awe at her writing, and her ability to cross genres, going from romance (Regretting You) and now to thriller with Verity. I can’t wait to see what I will get next from her! Her writing is beautiful and descriptive. She foreshadows well, giving little details that you look back on in that “Oh!” moment as all the pieces come together.
The Plot: Verity‘s plot was built so well. The story started off with a big event that made me quickly invested in the story. I was captivated from start to finish, drawn in to each detail and nugget of information that Colleen Hoover gave to me. The plot is a twisted mess, not her writing, but the story; it can turn a person’s stomach *Check out my content warnings!* There is also a bit of a romance aspect to this story. I really feel this is heavily a thriller and should not be read by someone looking for a romance story…look elsewhere. Verity is filled with suspense and pretty sad subject matter with a bit of a lust story added.
The Characters: I found the main character, Lowen, completely likable. I think she made some decisions that maybe I would not have made, but that’s fiction, and it made such a great story. The other characters were well-built and had great depth to them. Their backstories were well-built and shaped them.
Overall: I loved Verity and I am sure it will end up in my top 2020 thrillers. It was a strong story line that kept me guessing at every turn.
Content Warning: This book contains references and descriptive detail of murder, child neglect, and child death.
To Read or Not To Read:
I highly recommend this book for readers that enjoy a psychological thriller! The writing will keep you on the edge of your seat and the end will have you continuing to think about the story for a long time after!
Lowen Ashleigh has just been offered the writing job of a lifetime, except she’s not interested in the fame that comes with it…just the fortune. Struggling financially, Lowen agrees to complete a book series by ultra-famous author, Verity Crawford in exchange for anonymity and payment. Verity Crawford was recently injured in a car accident and is unable to finish the series.
Lowen arrives at the Crawford estate for a few days of deep-diving research into Verity’s previous books and notes on the remaining ones left to write. In her digging, she uncovers an autobiography of Verity’s terrible confessions.
As Lowen tries to figure out what to do about this manuscript, things start happening in the house. Verity has been comatose since her car accident, so what is going on?
I loved the ending. The last few chapters did me in. I literally had tears streaming down my face. I have NEVER read a book that wrapped up the way Colleen Hoover did in Regretting You. I am still in awe and I absolutely loved it. I’m not going to say anything more about this because there will not be spoilers from me, but it is worth the read.
How I Felt:
This is my FIRST Colleen Hoover book, and I am already figuring out how to fit more of her books into my reading list! The way she wove this story was fascinating. The book is told from two perspectives, 16-year-old Clara, and her mother, Morgan. I loved how raw the emotions were during their struggles in this book. Above all else, for me, this book was about healing, forgiving, and relationships of family and love.
There are two stories of romance for the reader. Clara’s is a first love sort of story with all the goodies and struggles that go along with that. Then, Morgan’s story is filled with healing after the death of her husband and finding a new path forward.
The writing in Regretting You is phenomenal. The first-person narrative is captivating, as each woman tells their story. The supporting characters all played a role in the story, and I loved the role each played.
To Read or Not To Read:
If you love Colleen Hoover, I’m sure this is already on your TBR (to-be-read) list. So, this section is more for those that haven’t discovered her yet. Regretting You is a real-feel life story filled with struggles that really happen and may touch you on a personal note. You are pulled in by each character’s heartbreak and happiness. If you enjoy a book that tugs at the heart strings, but can also give you those warm fuzzies, you need to read this book.
Have you read any other books by Colleen Hoover yet? Check out my review of Verity by Colleen Hoover!
Morgan and Clara seem to have a pretty normal teenage daughter and mother relationship. There’s absolutely love there, but there’s also tension. Morgan was young and unexpectedly pregnant with Clara and wants to make sure Clara doesn’t follow the same path her mother did. Clara wants to go to an arts school to become an actress and has no intention of leading the same life as her mother.
Their fairly ordinary life is turned upside down when Chris, Morgan’s husband and Clara’s father is killed in a car accident. Devastated by the loss, Morgan quickly finds that there are more questions than answers surrounding the accident. Struggling to shield Clara from these unexpected and unwanted secrets, Morgan finds herself at constant odds with Clara. Can these two find a way to heal their relationship and their hearts?
Regretting You by Colleen Hoover
Page Count: 363 pages
Genre: Romance / YA / Contemporary
Pub Date: December 10, 2019
I received a copy of this advanced reader’s copy for free. I am leaving my honest review voluntarily.