AMBER TO ASHES by Gail McHugh
Atria Books Paperback | On sale: June 9, 2015 | 480 pages
ISBN: 9781476766010, $15.00 | eBook ISBN: 9781476766041, $7.99
They were a storm I never saw coming, an unforeseen heartbreak on the edge of a dangerous cliff.
In AMBER TO ASHES, Amber Moretti’s life changes in the span of minutes. An orphaned outsider, she is desperate to start fresh the moment she walks onto campus. In the time it takes to cross the university’s dining hall, she meets two men who bring color, air, and light to her darkened world.
They became my addiction, each a needle to my next hit, my high.
Brock Cunningham’s appeal is dizzying, a potent force Amber can’t deny. A green-eyed smooth talker, he instantly attracts Amber. It doesn’t take long for him to consume her every thought, her every breath.
Ryder Ashcroft, a blue-eyed, tattooed, and pierced bad boy, turns Amber off immediately—that is, until he kisses her, stealing a piece of her heart, her soul.
They were as opposite as fire and ice, yet I ached for them equally.
Never knowing she could be broken down in so many unexpectedly beautiful yet petrifying ways, Amber finds herself falling for both men.
Immoral? Maybe. I say undeniable. Uncontained.
But one devastating event changes everything, shattering each of their lives…and Amber isn’t sure she can recover from it.
Once I got into this book, I was rewarded with a dramatic, VERY sexy story with a fabulous story and memorable characters. There is a little bit of a Colleen Hoover and Jamie McGuire vibe about this book, but it is also very adult on many levels, despite the college setting.
Amber, Brock and Ryder are all very complex characters and their histories makes it easy to understand and empathize with them as they plunge headlong into a steamy and passionate relationship. Amber especially has suffered terribly, but has pulled her life together (somewhat) by attending college in Maryland.
“… (T)heir safety net came too late, unable to save me from my ancient habits. I continue to disconnect, self-destructing one man at a time, using sex as a brain detox. Sex is and will always be where I find control, a hidden shelter keeping me benign from the cancer that will forever disease the dark, frayed edges of my thoughts. Starting at the age of fourteen, I’ve abused, loved, craved, and hated sex in ways most people can’t fathom. It’d rock their skulls. I’ve given it away without feeling a morsel of anything for the person on the receiving end and, many times, accepted it from those I knew couldn’t stomach me.”
Amber is deeply attracted to both Brock and Ryder but Gail McHugh makes it very understandable how their feelings develop, even though Brock and Ryder are best friends:
“Despite my friendship with Brock, Amber’s worth a few rounds in the moral boxing ring.”
The plot was unexpectedly thrilling, and there was a rawness to this book that I did not expect. The characters were also unexpectedly sympathetic. I had a few minor drawbacks with the story but overall, I felt that Amber to Ashes was a very fresh and surprisingly sexy story that left me wanting more from this author!
“Attraction. Lust. All a lethal but beautiful cocktail that’s about to combust, exploding each of us into a state of numbness, a state of healing through what we need. Each other . . .”
(ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)
About the author:
Gail McHugh is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Collide and Pulse. She is the mother of three beautiful children and has been married to her husband for fifteen years.
Buy the book:
Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win a SIGNED copy of Amber to Ashes!