Quinton once got a second chance at life-but he doesn’t want it. The tattoos on his chest are a constant reminder of what he’s done, what he’s lost. He’s sworn to never allow happiness into his life . . . but then beautiful, sweet Nova makes him smile. He knows he’s too damaged to get close to her, yet she’s the only one who can make him feel alive again. Quinton will have to decide: does he deserve to start over? Or should he pay for his past forever?
Last year, I devoured Jessica Sorensen’s The Secret of Ella & Micha and The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden. And then I waited (impatiently) for the next books in both series. And now, I’m in the exact same boat after Breaking Nova. I turned the page (swiped, whatever) and it was over. I sat, staring at my iPad for at least 3 minutes wondering if the next book was going to show up. Then I read a teaser she included, and stared again. Because seriously. Trying to kill me? This book, though … It was exactly what I needed to read. Breaking Nova hooked me from the first chapter, broke my heart, made me feel depressed, but then hopeful, and then broken again. The entire book went this way.
There were definitely some heavy themes in this book, and Jessica portrayed them beautifully. From reading her other books, I know this is definitely one of Jessica’s strong points. She can take some super serious material and connect readers who might not have an inkling of those problems, lifestyles, experiences. Somehow, you just get her characters. You feel for them … you feel like you are them. You want to fix them, hug them, shake them. This was no different with Nova and Quinton.
The book is told from both POVs and as it begins, we are in the past. With both intros, I get a sense of some serious foreboding. I know what’s going to happen is going to shatter me. I was right. Flash to 15 months later, and we see how Nova and Quinton are dealing (or not) with what has become of their lives. When they meet each other, there’s this strange, instant connection. Neither wants it, but for whatever reason, they’re drawn to one another. Even though they barely ever divulge enough information about themselves, they somehow find a way to start to heal. A little. Each lives their life with a sense of numbness. The people they were before no longer exist, and both Nova and Quinton struggle with the new versions of themselves.
I loved the flashback moments. This helped connect the major points of the story and I felt it so much more than I would’ve had I just been told by the characters. Through those moments, I was actually in them. Living them along with Nova or Quinton. Oftentimes, I found myself holding my breath and rushing through the passage just to get to the other side of the nightmare.
I appreciate Jessica’s ability to write such emotion and angst, but also there’s such a reality and honesty to her stories. As much as I wanted Nova to save Quinton or vice versa, I understood the way they did save one another. While not through conventional methods, and often I found myself cringing, stressed, and questioning what the hell was wrong with them … they did change.
I think they both still have a long way to go. And after what they’ve been through, that makes sense. I don’t think she could’ve kept the integrity of the story if it would’ve gone any other way. I was able to connect with Nova and Quinton on such a basic level, and my heart broke for them. I can’t imagine having gone through what they did, and while I want them to be okay, I get where they’re going, and why they’re not.
There were some great supporting characters, too. They all did their fair share of pissing me off. Delilah–my heart hurts for her. She’s so damaged, and watching her fall deeper over the course of this book killed me. I wanted to make her okay. Dylan–not sure about this dude. Such a scummer and definitely something off about how he treats Delilah. Tristan–that boy just needs a hug. I really loved him. So completely messed up. But I would hope a hug would fix it. ;)
I look forward to seeing where everyone’s story goes next, and based on the teaser at the end of Breaking Nova, I’m sure it’ll be chock full of the angst that Jessica writes so so well. I’ve not found out any details on the sequel, but I need it…approximately yesterday when I finished this book.
I have no idea who she is, but she looks about my age. “Yeah…”
“Like the car.” The sound of his voice is familiar, way too familiar, like the world has decided to play a cruel joke on me. When a guy steps out of the hallway, I just about drop dead on the floor as the similarity intensifies and sends my mind spinning. Everything about him screams Landon, and for a second I really believe it’s him.
It’s not really the similarities in features as much as something less visible. He’s taller than Landon, with dark brown hair inside of black, and it’s shaven short instead of hanging in his eyes. He also has slightly more muscle tone to him, and there’s an indistinct scar over his top lip. All these things don’t match up, but it’s the little details that push an insanity button in my head. Like the charcoal on his hands, or the fact that the laces of his boots are untied, something Landon used to do all the time. The sound of his voice, deep and smooth like melted butter, has a strikingly comparable ring to it. And his eyes. Those goddamn honey-brown eyes with so much sorrow in them it nearly swallows any happiness in the room. I’ve only seen that much sadness in one person’s eyes. Ever. And when they lock on me, it’s like I’m drowning in his sorrow—Landon’s sorrow.
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