I discovered this author with her first book, Storm, and very quickly became obsessed with her books. I’ve read most of them three or four times so far. The first series is about a rock band, and whenever I heard a song on the radio I liked, I pictured this imaginary band playing it. Yes, I’m that obsessed. Not to say I was like that with them all. There was one I only read once, not because it wasn’t good, but the main theme was just something I’m not comfortable with.
Then she came out with a spin-off series, the Devil’s Wolves. I liked the first one, Torn, but wasn’t obsessed with it. So now we come to Book 2, Tied, and I was wondering how I would react to it. The answer is very favourably. I enjoyed it much more than the first. It’s a book I couldn’t put down and I’m going to be reading it again (and then probably again and again) so I don’t miss anything during the first read.
We first met the hero, Tyler Grace, in the first book in a short but very memorable scene. We see enough of him in that book to know he is one messed up guy and in Tied we see why. This is an emotional book of two very broken people who, while chances are they will never be “normal,” they fill the needs of each other.
Tyler lives in the woods outside the small town he grew up in. He was horribly disfigured when he was 16 and life was good and his future bright. He was pushed into a bonfire and suffered horrible burns. He didn’t handle it well and life as he knew it went down the tubes. Then things got worse when he was in a bad motorcycle crash while stoned. He now has scars over scars, but the most devastating effect was his father’s death, which Tyler holds himself responsible for. Their last contact was a fight. So Tyler has multiple issues, and guilt is a big one.
He now hides in the woods, away from society, and has very limited interaction with his family.
He is out one night on a regular nightly haunt when he hears a strange noise, and after looking to see where it’s coming from, he discovers an underground room and inside is a young woman and her dog. Turns out she has been missing for years when she was kidnapped and has been held by a monster all this time. Because of Tyler’s rescue, she is finally free.
The young woman in question, Holly Daniels, is almost 20 and has been held and brutally abused since she was 8. She hasn’t even seen the sky since that time. Her reentry into society does not go well. She isn’t used to crowds, she hates being known wherever she goes as ‘the girl in the hole,’ and her relationship with her mother and father is dysfunctional at best. The only time she feels free and ‘at home’ is when she is with Tyler. She recognizes him as someone who suffers the same kind of pain.
At first Tyler wants nothing to do with her. He doesn’t feel he’s near good enough. But her quiet and inner strength call to him.
I love this book. The reader hurts so much for what they’ve both been through. But the reader also feels how they begin putting the pieces of their shattered lives back together; they need each other to heal.
Carian Cole writes such beautiful and memorable characters that she blows me away. They are people who seem so real and people I want to meet and get to know. Tyler and Holly are such people. They are both so vividly vulnerable and incomplete without the other. While normally I would be skeptical of any relationship with a heroine so young, because of what she has experienced and how being with Tyler slowly heals her with his quiet acceptance and love, I have no trouble at all believing that this is a love that will last a lifetime.
In order to survive her imprisonment, Holly read and reread and believed in the fairytale books that helped keep her sane and Tyler is the prince who rescued her. This book truly does have an adult fairytale feel to it and I just find it exquisite. Ms. Cole is an author who appeals to me on every level as a reader, and I’m already looking forward to her next book. In the meantime, I have this one as well as her Ashes and Ember books to read until the next one comes out.
He was the myth and the legend of our small town. But no one knew the truth… except me.
My childhood was stolen by a monster. I’ve forgotten what love feels like. What happiness feels like. What hope feels like. I am numb.
He’s possibly as damaged as I am. Maybe even more. Scarred just as much on the inside as the outside. Just like me. He doesn’t speak. He doesn’t smile. He hides in the woods like an animal. I should be scared of him. But I’m not. He’s the only one that has ever made me feel. And I want to make him feel, too.
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