Title: War Poppy
Series: War #1
Author: Stevie J. Cole & LP Lovell
writing as Nicole Lynne
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: February 6, 2017
Love and war. Two words that should have little association, but to me the two go hand in hand. Both are a tragedy. They rip you open and spit you out. The war killed my husband, Connor, shattered my will to live, and took my best friend. Brandon may not have physically died in that war, but his soul did. And now we're left to pick up the wreckage. Expected to move on when all that is left is the ruins of a life we once had.
War. It took everything from me, even myself. When you're only able to exist, death seems like a blessing. Pain...a welcome distraction. I ran from everything associated with my past, and then she found me, fighting, drowning myself in whisky, trying to forget. She reminds me of Connor, of what I've lost—what we've lost. In the midst of destruction, she's a salvation I don't deserve.
I shouldn't love him.
I shouldn't love her.
Love is a war we never should have fought.
These girls...they really know how to write together I tell ya! This is the fourth book I've read by the Stevie J. Cole, L.P. Lovell (Nicole Lynne) duo and it's unreal what they make you experience when reading thier words. Heed the warnings, this book isn't light and airy at all. It's real and gritty, with only one way to go and of course hard to review without spoilers.
"He's gone...he and I both-casualties of war."
From the clever title to the complex characters, this book had me on the edge of my seat the entire time. Never knowing what was around the corner for Brandon and Poppy was excruciating. At one point I wanted her to stay and with the turn of the page, I needed her to get out of there.
"People die of a broken heart all the time, you know, Brandon? They do and my heart is fu@king slaughtered."
From the blurb we know Poppy lost her husband, Connor, in the war. She is now left to pick up the pieces of her life, as well those of thier best friend Brandon. Like a lot of soldiers, Brandon came back a different man. He now lives with ghosts of his past that he can't seem to quiet down.
"A friend is someone who understands your past, accepts you for all your wrongs, and who carries you when no one else will."
She is his rock, or at least tries her best to be. They are two broken souls trying to "fix" each other with disastrous results. The guilt that plagues them both daily is almost too much for one person to bare, let alone trying to take on the others. Something's got to give and as I read, I was scared to see exactly what that was going to be.
"She needs me and I need her. It's a twisted form of co-dependency, but it's all we have."
So sad. Just as they reach the light at the end of the tunnel, the memories snuff it out and they are once again back at square one. Tragic. The roller coaster of emotions was epic, the angst at an all time high from the first page to the last.
"She may be my hope, but I'm surely her destruction. I just wish she would see it. I wish she would run, but she won't, because she has nothing to run to."
After a while I wanted Brandon to man up and face his responsibilities and just that quickly, I backed down realizing nobody but the person themselves knows what they are going through. The mind is a strong and tricky thing. Thinking you know what a person is actually experiencing is ignorant. Which is why Poppy did the best she could with what she had. She was written as a strong and equally weak character, full of surprises.
"Two people who shouldn't belong together, through death, now could not belong to anyone else."
And that's the truth. Well written and hauntingly beautiful. This is the type of book I need to get me out of the millionaire, billionaire, jock, rockstar funk. A book that grabs your heart and crushes it in between its pages. A book that you want to put down a million times, but can't leave the characters for a minute.
Book 2, War Hope is releasing May 2, 2017
About Stevie J. Cole
Stevie J. Cole lives deep in the woods of Alabama with her husband and two precious daughters. She studied Epidemiology concentrating on cancer research but has always had a passion for writing. Some of her stories will strip you bare, some will give you nightmares, but the one thing she can promise is that she will always give you stories that make you feel.
Raw. Gritty. Love.
Because sometimes characters need to be flawed.
P.S. Stevie's greatest fear is the impending zombie apocalypse. Think about it: swarming armies of decaying, oozing corpses stumbling around with clicking teeth, trying to eat your face. Nothing about that is good. NOTHING!
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About LP Lovell
Lauren Lovell is an indie author from England.
She suffers from a total lack of brain to mouth filter and is the friend you have to explain before you introduce her to anyone, and apologise for afterwards.
She's a self-confessed shameless pervert, who may be suffering from slight peen envy.
LP loves to hear from readers so please get in touch.