on March 13, 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Romance, Thriller
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It has been a long, long time since I’ve seen your little face, chérie. Not once did you visit. That really hurt; after all, it was thanks to you I was convicted. That’s not something you forget.
I thought it was time— a visit was due. Seeing as you wouldn’t come to me, I thought it only right I come to you. Sadly, you weren’t home, but your furry feline was more than accommodating . . .
I’ll be seeing you soon, mon chérie. I’ll always find you . . .
For six years, a letter has dictated Amelia’s future. She’s running from a past that refuses to stop, always trying to get one step ahead. Amelia is clever and resilient, and refuses to slip up.
Relying only on herself, she’ll be anything and anyone she needs to survive. But everyone slips up . . . eventually. You can’t always stay ahead of the darkness.
I’m trying to gather my thoughts and figure out how to begin this review. Ahead of the Darkness was very different from what I expected and well, just different all around. BUT, different in a good way. A very good way. I found myself immersed in the story quickly and thoroughly enjoyed Simone Nicole‘s writing style. I’ve been finding myself bored as of late. I blame my choices in books or maybe genre or maybe it’s just me. I don’t know what’s caused this I only know that Simone Nicole lifted my spirits and engaged my brain. I feel rejuvenated and enlightened. There are good stories out there being told and we just need to give these new authors a chance.
This particular story is about a young woman on the run. From what we can tell Amelia has been running for a very long time. It does take quite a while to get the bits and pieces of her story out, however I appreciated that. It definitely leads to the suspense. Why is she running? From whom? What’s going to happen if she’s caught? As it turns out Amelia or Mia as she now goes by, ends up in a small town called Seaford. Mia has spent many years trying to blend in. She doesn’t do exciting. She doesn’t really live at all. She’s too busy hiding and trying not to make attachments.
Still, I always wish I’d make a different choice, take a different path, be stronger somehow. Now I just keep praying that it’s all a bad dream and any second now I’ll wake up, for real this time. Please, wake up.
Drew is a Scotsman. He owns a bar. He works out. In fact he meets Mia at the gym. I was immediately taken with Drew. I loved how the author wrote his dialogue. I could hear him in my head and it was delicious. It didn’t even matter that sometimes I had no clue what he was saying. I understood enough. Mia helped with her description of him oh wait that was the author too. I was so enthralled with this man that I almost forgot Mia was on the run. The sexual tension between the two of them was hot. I had butterflies!! Been a long time since a book gave me butterflies. And when they finally do get together, I don’t know how it’s possible but I was even more in LUST with Drew.
“Ye left me sleeping, and I woke late.” Oh, oops. “I cannae work smelling like ye, now can I? Ye were all over me when I woke. I could smell ye on my skin, my hair.” He breathed me in. His nose grazed my neck as he pulled back. My eyes fluttered closed, and then burst open.
*ahem* oh yea um where was I? Oh right the review! This book was so much more though than sexual tension and a sexy Scot! Although….no seriously, for whatever reason the connections Mia makes in this small town are more meaningful than ever before. She finds herself opening up more and more and it scares her. Some of my favorite parts of the story were when she interacted with Jules. I loved his character, he was flirty and fun and added some “light” to this otherwise heavy story. Jules and Drew together were downright hilarious at times.
“Ye dirty bastard. Ye best not smell of sex, ye wee prick, or I’ll have to hose ye down.”
Despite the reason Mia is running, this story is a story about family. We don’t always get to choose who we’re related to but we do get to choose who we surround our self with. Mia despite her best efforts, has surrounded herself with people who care about her and they care about each other. These interactions are crucial and the catalyst for the decisions she makes throughout the story.
One of my favorite parts of the book, and there are many, is when it occurs to Mia that Drew is Scottish and so that could mean he may own a kilt.
“You have a kilt?”
“Upstairs?” Please say yes, please say yes!
“Nope, I’m nae putting it on. So ye can stop looking at me like I’m hiding ye Christmas presents.”
He totally had a kilt and let me just say, the following scene was HOT! If only I had pictures!
This story is not all smiles and laughter. Not at all, it’s an emotional, dark story about a girl on the run. The humor just adds some levity. There were some confusing sentences and timeline issues that I had but the story itself is so good that I couldn’t even bring myself to take anything away from the rating. I hope that everyone reads this book. Oh and the end!!! Hmmm….I was yelling at my kindle. My husband was alarmed, he thought I got bad news. Well I did!! And that my friends means it does end in a cliffhanger. Do not let this deter you! Read it, it’s an amazing debut!
*A copy of this book was kindly provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*
“Take a deep breath,” he moved on without comment, “duck ye head under the water, and exhale through ye nose. When ye run outta air, pop ye head back up.” I bit my lip and nodded, but I was less than confident.
“But, what if, what if the water goes up my nose?” I whispered. I sounded like a small child, but I was too panicked to care.
“Hold ye nose, love. Like this.” He pinched his nose and dropped under. It was silly, but I gasped. A second later he reappeared, shaking his head like a dog, spraying water all over me. I smiled as I tried to hide from the spray. He seemed to know just how to diffuse me. It was bizarre, to say the least, but I was a little grateful.
“Yer turn. Do you need me to hold ye hand?” And sweet Drew was gone. He was back to his usual self.
I scoffed at that offer. “No.” But it might have been nice.
“One. Two.” I pinched my nose, and my pulse beat a million miles per minute. “Three!”
And I was under.
Oh God, oh God, breathe, no, don’t breathe, just … don’t breathe.
So I counted. I counted to ten and that was enough. I broke the surface, and gasped for breathe.
“Ye did good. Just next time, breathe first, aye?” Oh, yeah.
“Yeah, okay. Now what?”
“Now ye try holding yer breath for longer.”
“Aye. The fun comes later.”
I raised an eyebrow. The boys had clearly started to rub off on me. He smirked in return.
“How long can you hold your breath?”
“A while. Why? Ye want to challenge me?”
Do I? “Always.”
He smiled, and shook his head.
“One. Don’t forget to take a deep breath in. Three!” I sucked a huge breath in and we ducked under the cool water.
I watched a little in awe as tiny bibles left Drew’s nose. His hair sort of hovered in the water. He looked so beautiful that I found it easier to be still under the water just staring at him. He wiggled his eyebrows at me and it took all my strength not to laugh, expelling all my air. I did, however, poke my tongue out at him. It wasn’t the smartest thing to do, as when I pulled it back in it, tasted like manky seawater, and I wrinkled my face up in disgust. Surprisingly, I still managed to hold the little breath I had left in. Drew, however, lost all control at my tongue poking or face pulling, I wasn’t sure which, most likely both. He laughed heartily, expelling all his air in a great, big, gust, and had to go back up for air. I broke the surface to hear Drew coughing and spluttering.
“Ha! I won.” I’d be lying if it didn’t give me a little satisfaction that I sort-of won, by default but a win all the same.
“Ye’re a pisser. And ye didn’t win, ye cheated.”
“Oh, and you weren’t trying to cheat by wiggling your eyebrows at me? All’s fair in love and war, baby!”
“Which are we?” he asked softly, and my heart stuttered.
“Ah … definitely war.”