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Search tags: Indra-Vaughn
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review 2019-01-03 03:36
Vespertine
Vespertine - Indra Vaughn,Leta Blake

This just didn't work for me. Seventeen years pass between the MCs breaking up and meeting up again. That's just too long for anyone to still be hung up on a first love, especially when I couldn't even imagine why they'd be friends in the first place. Nicky's kind of got an excuse, since he's supposed to be emotionally-stunted from his years of drug use. I'm not sure what Jasper's excuse is, but he reverts back to a teenager as soon as Nicky's around. He doesn't have a concrete personality, just "revelations" as required for the plot.

 

I didn't buy the connection between the MCs. Zero chemistry - for me. I'm clearly the odd one out on this one, since everyone else seems to love it. I wanted to like it, and most of it I did like, but there was always something off. If it wasn't the painfully horrible song lyrics, it was the ham-fisted way that Jasper's conflict of religion was handled. If it wasn't the stereotypical portrayal of the rock star life and the evil record company big wigs, it was the overly contrived situations the authors kept putting the characters in to manufacture UST that fell flat on its face. Then because the authors made the reader wait so long for the smexy, a bunch of sex gets crammed into the end, by which point I was beyond caring. Then the authors threw in an absolutely ridiculous plot "twist" that annoyed me so much I had to skim most of the after-school special melodrama, which was as cliched and predictable as you would expect, just to not have my first read of 2019 end up a DNF.

 

Actually, that was a big issue from the beginning of the book. Because this is a Romance(™) so there has to be an HEA or at least an HFN, and for that to happen, there's no way Jasper was ending this book still a priest. It was pretty easy to see how that resolution was being set up. That wouldn't be an issue, necessarily, but I could never buy into Jasper's existential crisis. It came across shallow. A little less clear was Nicky's ending, but you knew something dramatic would happen to make his situation with his record company better.

 

And that was another problem. There was just so much drama. While this did start out promising, it quickly nose-dived into Dramaville around 70% and never quite climbed it's way back out again. The drama llamas were stampeding and they weren't letting our characters out of this book without massive amounts of MELODRAMA.

 

Melodramatic yelling at your long-lost love.
Melodramatic song lyrics.
Melodramatic praying in the shower.
Melodramatic swimming.
Melodramatic running away down the road whilst halfway tearing off your clothes. Yes, that deserved a "whilst."
Melodramatic phone tossing - because you can't have melodramatic ANGST if the characters can contact each other too easily. (Did he ever get a new phone?)
Melodramatic crying.

 

So.

 

Much.

 

Crying.

 

I didn't feel any of these emotions were genuine, nor did I feel any real attachment to the characters. Basically, I had attachment disorder with this book. :D

 

I didn't hate all of it. I liked all the stuff with the teens in Blue Oasis. I liked Thomas and Mrs. Wells, and Nicky's parents and Ramona. The cat was hilarious. Nicky even had his moments when he wasn't being an ass or annoying. Jasper was mostly lost potential though, sadly.

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review 2018-11-15 00:03
Sometimes loosing everything isn't the end of your life...
Patchwork Paradise - Indra Vaughn,Craig Beck

It's just the beginning of a new one.

 

Oliver and Samuel have it all. Their's is a fairytale existence...until it isn't. It can take a lifetime to find love and a moment to loose it. No one knows this better than Oliver. 

 

'Patchwork Paradise' is the story of one man's struggle to survive the tragedy of loosing the man he loves and rebuilding his life only to discover that while he's lost one love there's another one waiting for him...not to replace what's gone because nothing could ever do that. This love is there waiting to fill it's own place in his heart.

 

I've had this one in my audio library for a while now and when I came across it the other day I decided that it was time so I grabbed my handy box of tissues and hit the play button and barely 30 minutes into the story tissue in hand dabbing at the tears in my eyes...I questioned my sanity and kept right on listening because this isn't a story about loss it's a story about surviving it, about moving forward and about paying tribute to the person you've lost by going on and making a new life for yourself. One that's filled with love, laughter and hope.

 

That's what Ollie (Oliver) did of course he mourned the loss of Sam and rightfully so. Sam was his forever love but unfortunately as we all know life's not fair and nothing ever last forever...but, Sam was the person who taught Ollie how to love so a part of him will live forever. Every step that Ollie takes towards rebuilding his life, every time he puts his heart out there it's because Sam's love showed him that he was worth it, he deserved it and in his heart Ollie knew that the last thing Sam wanted was for his life to end with Sam's.

 

I seriously thought Sam was awesome even though we didn't get a lot of time with him. I think the magnitude of what a wonderful man he was came through because of Ollie. It was his memory of Ollie and how much Sam loved him that gave Ollie the strength to keep trying...to remember even after they're gone how much someone loves us is a pretty powerful indicator of what we meant to them and to be able to open your heart up to the possibility of finding love again shows just how positive that love was.

 

There were some surprising things that happened in this story that for me made it all the more interesting and even though I'm pretty late to the party on this one I'm not going to delve into them to deeply because I'm just guessing that maybe I'm not the only one who hasn't read/listened to this book yet.

 

While Sam and Oliver started out as the MCs in the story there was also a core group of friends who were integral to the story and certain events in particular. Within the boundaries of Sam and Ollie's group of friends we have Ollie's best friend (Cloe), Cloe's boyfriend (Imre) and Thomas (Ollie's friend from work and the man who's quietly loved him for years). There's also Sam''s parents and that'll be enough about them and then there's Ollie's mother (most adorable grandma so far this year). 

 

 

While this was only my second time with a book by the author Indra Vaughn. It's the my fourth time around with the narrator Craig Beck and once again this narrator has done an exceptional job of giving this story added depth and breathing life and emotion into the characters leaving me confident that when I see his name listed as the narrator I'm not going to be disappointed with what I hear.

 

"Patchwork Paradise' is a story of pain, lose, friends, family, comfort, healing, second chances, starting over, strength & courage, finding love, having hope...it's about life...the one we have, the one's we lose and all the things in between that touch them.

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review 2017-01-26 02:11
The Winter Spirit by Indra Vaughn
The Winter Spirit - Indra Vaughn
I absolutely love the story, love the fairy-tale setting of "I love you" conquers death and evil evil relatives. Love the snowed-in isolated dwellings, love googly-eyed couples. Love characters damaged and hurt by former lovers/spouses.

The problem for me here is the length of the book. Not enough Owen. Not enough of the lovey-dovey couple (there were adorbs!), not enough Nate's history, not enough Nate/Gabriel interaction prior to the events. I hope some day the author will expand and build upon this story. But right now I have to take a star (maybe even a star and then some) for missed opportunities.

In the end it still mounts up to 4 stars.
Thank you for a cozy winter/holiday miracle read, Indra! :)

PS Oh, and I love the cover, too! :D

===========

Found Gabriel and Heath :D

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2016-12-27 20:45
Too Much!
Dust of Snow - Indra Vaughn

A Dust of Snow was what I'd call a 'hot mess'. It had way too many ideas and this writer didn't have the chops to follow through with most of them. Let's see there was the crazy ex, odd boss, Ashley's family drama, Greg's cool mother - this could have been a great story all alone and well it was just too much. I wanted it to end at the about the halfway mark. They were not hot or sexy and I thought they were wusses at times. Oh wait, I forgot Ashley's sleeping disorder that could have been an entire book in itself. Just too, too many loose strings for me.

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text 2016-11-02 13:05
Reading progress update: I've read 80%.
Vespertine - Indra Vaughn,Leta Blake

"Breathe, baby."

 

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