Genres: Abuse, Adult Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Drama, Erotica, Romance, Sociology
This is not your typical love story.
It’s not so black and white. Lines are crossed.
Walls are smashed. Good becomes bad.
Bad becomes very, very good.
Shayda Hijazi—the perfect wife, the perfect mother, the perfect daughter. For thirty-three years, she has played by the rules, swallowing secrets, burying dreams and doing whatever it takes to anchor her family. Shayda Hijazi is about to come face to face with the one thing that can rip it all apart, the one thing her heart has always been denied: Love.
Troy Heathgate—untamed, exhilarating, dangerous—a man who does exactly as he pleases. Life bends to his will. Until he comes across the one thing he would give it all up for, but can never have.
Born on the same day in opposite corners of the world, their lives collide. And nothing is ever the same again.
Spanning three decades, 53 Letters for My Lover is a fiercely sensual, emotional ride to the heart of an epic, forbidden love that defies it all—an intimate exploration of love, loyalty, passion, betrayal, and the human journey for hope, happiness and redemption.
***Indie Reader "Best Books of 2014"***
Contemporary women's fiction: Ages 18+
This is so much more than a love story, more than a story of infidelity, more than a story about culture. This is a story about accepting who you are, loving yourself, allowing yourself to be loved, to live, to breathe, to take chances, to let go and fly where ever your wings may take you.
I asked myself several questions while reading 53 Letters to My Lover. Is it ever okay to have an affair? Can you be happy in a marriage without passion? What is the message in this story? Does the cultural aspect change how this story is perceived? What does my reaction mean to me? This book demands more than just a lazy afternoon read. It begs you to sit up straight, to pay attention, to reflect on all the different layers to the characters and plot.
Leylah Attar is beautifully gifted with an ability to write mature, eloquent, thought provoking prose. Her words are melodic. They are graceful. They convey passion.
“Something changed in that instant. For me. For him. Like when the sun and moon align and day turns to night. They finally see each other’s faces and hang, transfixed, even as their eclipse throws everything else into darkness. For those fleeting moments, everything made sense—the pattern behind the random trajectory of life, the infinite order beneath chaos.”
I’ve tried to wrap my head around the emotions that 53 Letters brought to surface. Why did I have such a visceral reaction to this particular book? Is it because I’m married? Is it because I’m older and relate on some level to Shayda as a wife and mother? If you allow yourself to be truly immersed in Shayda’s story you realize very quickly that one’s culture and their deeply rooted beliefs have created these constructs for loveless marriages, abusive relationships, and the inability to put yourself first. This is not all encompassing across culture, religion, etc…each is unique, just as each individual, and each relationship. I’m merely generalizing whereas the author gives you a specific and defined glimpse into Persian culture. Adding in some Canadian influences just to throw you off balance. Shayda’s life is unique. This story would have a much different outcome if taken place in Iran.
“The heels bring me almost eye to eye with him. When I look at the sky, I will think of it like this—on fire, with crackling clouds of desire. He angles his head and leans in, his lips are almost touching mine. He looks at me like that until I gasp, until I’ve seen all the things we’re going to do, all the things that have already come alive, in the private corners of his mind.”
There is nothing better than a story that takes place over several decades. Giving the author the ability to build those characters. Thus, allowing the reader to see the growth, to feel the change, to watch as time and circumstance mold those emotions and behaviors. 53 Letters is written in such a way that you get plenty of background without being fluffy. An unlikely love story that may be more common than not. Breaking barriers, taking chances, allowing yourself to be loved without remorse. Accepting responsibility and making ultimate sacrifices in order to be happy.
I implore you to take a chance on this book. To dig deep and see past the surface of the story.
*A copy of this book was kindly provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*