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Black Halo

    Heartbreak Row #1

    As I mentioned in my Crush List post, there are books that you fall in love with, that leave you breathless and sobbing your eyes out. Books that take your heart and stomp on it, leaving you completely destroyed.

    Thankfully there aren’t too many books that shatter your heart into a million pieces. But, here are five that have earned their place on Heartbreak Row.

    As some of the reasons they are so heartbreaking would involve spoilers, I will be slightly cryptic with my answers as to why I’m heartbroken. But if you’re willing to risk a broken heart, definitely check these books out.

    (Also, I could have called this Devastation Alley instead of Heartbreak Row, but that just sounds too over-dramatic, now doesn’t it?)

    If I Stay has earned a permanent place on Heartbreak Row. I still can’t even think of this book without tearing up. As much as I want to read it a second time, knowing how affecting it is, I just can’t quite willingly put myself through that again at the moment.

    And, this is one of those books that is just so powerful the first time around that you have to think about whether or not a re-read will take away from the experience.

    Why I’m heartbroken: It’s just so, so sad. The writing makes it impossible not to feel the depth of pain, the incredible loss, and the difficult choices that the main character is faced with.Delirium earned a spot on Heartbreak Row that I hope is not permanent. As it is the first book in a trilogy and I haven’t a clue as to what is going to happen next, I am keeping hope alive that things will be less devastating in the second and third books in the series. Of course, having now read two books by this author I don’t think that will be the case.

    And it is definitely possible that either of the next two books will be even more heartbreaking, but for now, Delirium is right where it should be.

    Why I’m heartbroken: The ending. And that lead up to the ending. Crushing. A complete tear-jerker ending. Shocking. Sob-inducing. The writing throughout is absolutely beautiful. It lulls you into a state of calm and then the floor drops right out from under you.

    Black Halo has a permanent place on Heartbreak Row. I have not yet read the last book in the series, Grace of Day, but that wouldn’t matter, although I have a feeling that it might be right up here with Black Halo when I do get a chance to read it.

    The series itself tugged at my heart multiple times in each of the books I’ve read. There are just so many moments that squeezed my heart and brought tears to my eyes.

    But none come even close to the one scene in this book which had me crying out loud without even realizing I was.

    Why I’m heartbroken: The scene between Robert and Grace – the one in which Grace puts her love for Robert above all else. My heart is breaking right now thinking of it. The scene was so raw, so real, so powerful and so unbelievably heartbreaking. Oh yeah, and then there’s the last page of the book.

    Shadow Kiss is another permanent fixture on Heartbreak Row. I was completely annihilated by the events that transpired in this book. Spirit Bound was a contender, but as it only had the one line which crushed me, Shadow Kiss was way more deserving of a spot. It is an absolute heartbreaker.

    Now, this is not to say that my heart wasn’t shredded a little bit in every single one of these books. But Richelle Mead reached in, grabbed my heart, ripped it out, and played football with it in Shadow Kiss.

    Why I’m heartbroken: For Rose. For what happens toward the end of this book. For having to walk away, completely helpless, unable to do anything even though it’s killing her. Rose’s heart was broken, so was mine.

    Absolution – and really the entire trilogy – caused me enough heartache, suffering and anguish to have earned a prime spot on Heartbreak Row.

    Every book in the trilogy lifts you up, gives you hope, and then smashes you to pieces. But as Absolution is the final book in the series, it’s the ending that kills – when there are no more pages to keep hope alive, when the story wraps up and you realize that the once possible future is no longer.

    Why I’m heartbroken: Because it had the right ending, even though it wasn’t the ending I had hoped for. Because I could see happily-ever-after being ripped away. Because I continued to hope until the very last possible moment. Because I fell in love with the idea of something impossible.

    ***

    So, this is just a peek at five of the books I have on Heartbreak Row. Books I’m glad that I’ve read without an audience. Books that make me glad I keep a box of Kleenex handy.

    And books whose pages deliver pain, sorrow, anguish and total heart-stopping devastation. Stories that are just as beautiful as they are cruel. Books that I will remember always.

    What books have you read that left you heartbroken?

    As I’m a total heartbreak junkie, I’d love to know!

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    The Extras: Teasers

    There are so many amazing books out there – released or soon-to-be-released – that have certain passages that just captivate.

    Here are just a few of those that caught my attention.

    From the thoughts of Ellie Monroe: (Note, this is from an electronic review copy and may not appear in the finished book.)

    Fresh, relentless, warm tears rolled down my cheeks. His promise melted through me, and my heart ached for everything that I wanted and couldn’t have. In the end, he was all I had. Through each lifetime, every last thing that I came to know and love in the world changed or vanished completely except for him. He was the only thing permanent in all of forever.

    I had to throw in one quote amongst all these passages, but it’s so true. This one from Ellie’s Mom regarding love:

    “It doesn’t make you blind. You’re very, very aware of everything about the one you truly love, whether you know it from what your eyes tell you or your heart. So no, love doesn’t make you blind. It paralyzes you until you can’t breathe or run away from it.”

    Ethan’s thoughts about Lena:

    I pulled her closer, until our hair was full of ash and grass, and the bitter lemon was lost somewhere beneath our feet at the bottom of the blanket. The heat was on my skin, like fire. Even though all I could feel was a biting cold whenever I held her hand lately, when we kissed – really kissed – there was nothing but heat. I loved her, atom by atom, one burning cell at a time. We kissed until my heart began skipping beats, and the edges of what I could see and feel and hear began to fade into darkness…

    From the thoughts of Lena Haloway:

    This is what I want. This is the only thing I’ve ever wanted. Everything else–every single second of every single day that has come before this very moment, this kiss–has meant nothing.

    AND

    I know that life isn’t life if you just float through it. I know that the whole point–the only point–is to find the things that matter, and hold on to them, and fight for them, and refuse to let them go.

    Varen Nethers writing to Isobel:

    In the shadows of the dreamland, he waits. He watches the gaping window to the world he had so longed to open. Now flown wide, bleak and empty, ravaged–like him–it grants his wish. He belongs.

    AND

    My beautiful, my Isobel. My Love. You ask me to wait. And so I wait.

    For all of this, I know, is but a dream.

    And when, in sleep, at last we wake,

    I will see you again.

    Grace’s thoughts (about Robert):

    My arms lifted and wrapped themselves around him. I brought him close against me, as close as I could, and he let me. He allowed me to bring him into the embrace, and he kissed me with a need that was beyond description. I knew it, I felt it; I breathed it in because I needed it, too.

    My heart was racing against time itself inside of my chest, and the voice inside of my head, the name that signified everything that mattered to me right then and there, blurred into peaceful hum that harmonized with the song that sang in my blood as I tasted the fire and everything it touched.


    Kylie’s thoughts from Born at Midnight: (please note that this passage is from a review copy and may not appear in the finished copy):

    Because as much as she liked kissing Trey, it was as if this was her very first grown-up kiss. Her first real taste of passion. This kiss, the thing she’d felt was somehow more. And God help her, because while she wasn’t ready for “more,” she still wanted it. And that, she supposed, was the true meaning of passion.

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