Good evening, bookworms! Happy (almost) Friday! It’s a rainy Thursday evening my way and it’s actually matching my mood because my latest read has positively destroyed me. I figured, why not share a review and make all of you suffer with me? I think it’s pretty brilliant.
On a quick side note, I have a few projects in the works, and plan to make some announcements soon, but for now, you can find The Blabbing Bibliophile is officially on Twitter! If you have interest in anything literary, give me a follow here.
Anyway, back to the book on deck. It’s a debut novel from up-and-coming author R.K. Ryde and I am so beyond blown away, I’m sure this review won’t make any sense. I love my romance novels and I adore a solid book boyfriend, but I think I have to say, if there are any sexy and steamy reads that are a MUST for 2016, Stella’s Awakening is absolutely the number one for the year (on my list anyway).
I am left absolutely shattered by this story. Conrad and Stella have thoroughly ruined any heart I thought I may have! I can’t tell you how close I am to hopping a plane from the States out to Australia to beg and plead Ryde for book two right this very instant because I’m so distraught!! I need answers, and I absolutely need more of this couple! She could write twenty plus books about these two and I’ll still need more.
I tried as best as I could to savor the pages of this stunning tale, but I wound up having zero control and wound up devouring all 495 pages in less than a 48 hour period.
Stella Welsch is a thriving name in the interior design world. Her business and client list is ever-expanding, but her success came at a price. Being raised as a sheltered Jehovah’s Witness, her education and independence aren’t necessarily looked upon with unwavering pride.
Conrad Adams is a mogul and one of Australia’s most eligible bachelors. When he spots Miss Welsch window-shopping at Tiffany’s with her usual morning coffee, he knows instantly that he wants her in any way he can possess her. Striking up a business deal for an office makeover, the two become friendly on a professional level, but before it can cross a line into any gray areas, Stella takes a step back and cuts ties with the Adonis. Her devout beliefs frown on much of what Conrad is looking for; true love and a soul mate. It doesn’t seem like too much to ask, but for Stella, she could lose everything she’s ever known.
In a moment of weakness, Stella finds herself contacting Conrad for help. Her head and her heart are conflicted and it’s all down (or up) hill from here on out. The pair have a walk and a heart-to-heart and become inseparable. Conrad is patient and attentive with Stella while she teaches him about her past and the demons she’s been hiding for years. Through mutual respect and time spent understanding one another’s boundaries, their feelings escalate relatively quickly, and life becomes a fairy tale for the two.
Unfortunately, the other shoe has to drop. I had a feeling something was lurking in the depths, but all Hell broke loose and I was left wanting to scream in the middle of my office. Hence my heart going bye-bye.
I don’t remember the last time I met a man as enamored as Conrad was with Stella. He is gentle, kind, patient, and fiercely protective of her delicate innocence and I couldn’t help but swoon over him for looking out for her. It made me glad to know how instantly devoted she was to him as well. When it came to their partnership, she was united with him and never questioned her morals. Yes, her inner voices battled it out on occasion, but never to the point she ran scared or frightened from his presence. She was bold, brave, and inquisitive about how worldly people like Conrad dealt with relationships. Her willingness to learn made it so easy for them to fall head-over-heels so quickly.
I also learned a great deal about her Witness lifestyle, and knew that would be the couples main obstacle. I knew little about the belief but knew it was a strict practice. The intricate politics behind the scenes were uncomfortable to deal with since I felt protective of Stella as well. I just wanted to see her and Conrad happy, but with her family and church community having such strong convictions, the pair knew an attempt at bliss would come at a price neither of them wanted to pay.
My heart aches for them both individually, and as a couple. I’m scrambling for book two because I have so many unanswered questions! Ryde did a fantastic job of tearing my heart out and leaving splinters when it came to these two, both in their good moments as bad. I’m left speechless as to convey my emotions properly. I’m clouded, and in an absolute funk until I get book two in my hands.