Today is the release day of the troubling New Adult novel Condemned by Hayley Oakes! This story was really different from other romances I’ve read, and I know I say that a lot, but this really isn’t your average romance story.
For eight years, I’ve lived with the scars left by him.
William Devereux consumed me until I didn’t know where I ended and he began … I tried to forget but I was forever changed.
And now he’s back.
Gone is the aggressive hothead who hurt me and set my body on fire in equal measure, replaced with a responsible, doting, single father.
I’m trying my best to remain unaffected.
He’s trying his best to make amends.
Sometimes the one thing you shouldn’t want, is the one thing you can’t breathe without.
Once again I have a lot to say, but this time it’s mainly positive. I really loved reading this book (although, once again, I have to admit that I haven’t finished reading it yet, because of uni and blahblah. I’m now 55% in and I can’T WAIT TO READ FURTHER)
The first thing that caught my eye was the ‘now’ and ‘then’ above each chapterpage. This really gave a thrilling side to the story, because you know something happened, but you only get to know what that is at the end (I guess, I still don’t know what it is). You get to read both sides of the story, Jessa’s and Will’s in the now, and you also get to read both sides, but then in the past. And because of the fact that Will can be called a ‘troubled man’, it’s really good that you get to read his side of the story as well. At first my thoughts about Will mainly consisted of “WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS MAN!!? WHY IS HE SO ANGRY?!!” (yep, I thought in capitals) But that gets all cleared up in the chapters from Will’s POV, which I loved. Will has his own reasons for behaving the way he does. Of course it’s never, ever, okay to hurt the ones you love (or people in general) the way that Will does. That’s why I got the massive cringes while reading about from Jessa’s POV, because she’s really confused about his behaviour towards her. After reading Will’s story, I got why he behaved the way he did. He’s been hurt in the past and because of that, he wants to hurt the people who seem to have a better life than he has. Most times, if not always, the worst bullies have been bullied or hurt themselves the most (by either their family or others). So, on the one hand I understood that, but at the same time I just wanted him to stop treating Jessa the way he did, because most times it really wasn’t okay.
I often had butterflies flying around in my belly, but that got followed by mayor cringe moments very fast. It was a good thing that Jessa seemed to have common sense, because she knew it was NOT okay how she was treated, but sometimes you just cling to the people who hurt you the most. Other stories where the man tends to be a little agressive at times, don’t have this main character with common sense and they just seem to think that agressive behaviour in a relationship is okay (see 50 Shades of Grey and Hard to Love) Well, at least I get that feeling because those main characters don’t seem scared of the way the man behaves, although that would be totally normal. Jessa lets the reader know that she’s really scared of Will at times, and that made me love her even more as a main character. *reading back, I have to add that Will is never physically agressive towards Jessa (only in the bedroom of course winkwink), but he’s really confusing in his behaviour, because one moment he glares at Jessa and says not so nice things to her and the next moment he tries to kiss her. Confusing right?*
To conclude: I think this story is a good example for that you never know what goes on in other people’s heads. Jessa is confused by Will’s behaviour and thinks that he is in control of his emotions and behaviour while that’s not the case.
4.75/5 ★ (so far)
*I received an electronical copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*