Somewhere to Begin by Mika Jolie
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Series: Poison and Wine #1
on September 20th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Dating & Sex, Family, Love & Romance, New Adult, Romance
There are wounds that never show on the body.
For twenty-nine years, Colbie Bennington does as expected with an eternal smile stained on her lips. The biggest chances she’s ever taken can be counted on one hand, three fingers to be exact—her battered red chucks, painting her toenails a vibrant blue, and her wedding dress. Always the dutiful daughter and a Stepford fiancée, she has never acted on impulse, never been in love.
She’s never lived.
On her wedding day, Colbie ends a toxic relationship, drops the fake smile, and says, “I can’t do this anymore.”
Navy SEAL Zander Serrano returns home broken and burdened with a volcano of remorse. Too trapped in a mental war to be at peace and too damaged to be at war, he shuts the world out. The last thing he expects is to feel, especially for a runaway bride with her own baggage.
Two empty hearts marred in different spots find themselves drawn to one another. Each with their own scars. Some, the world can see. Others, unseen to the naked eye.
They say two broken people should not be together. But for Colbie and Zander, their attraction is undeniable, unexpected.
Can two souls with fractured parts be the best cure for each other’s wounds?
Starting over is never easy, but sometimes in life, everyone needs somewhere to begin.
Runaway bride? Yes, please! I love weddings. I love looking at wedding photos, going to weddings, feeling the love in the air—but that’s not how Colbie’s story began. Colbie ran from the day that was supposed to be the happiest day of her life, and I had to know why. The cover initially drew me in (ehem, I love wedding photos, remember?), but I wanted to know what happened next. Where’d she run to, who found her, and where her story go after that?
I had really high expectations for this book because of the runaway bride factor. Some of those expectations were met, but not all of them. I liked Colbie when I met her. Who wouldn’t like a girl that can rock a pair of chucks with a wedding dress? She was sweet and kind, and basically anything that you could want in a main character. However, I wanted a little bit more. At times, Colbie was almost too perfect. Sure, she was running away from her problems, but I couldn’t blame her. If I were in her shoes, I would run away, too, even if I did get as far as the altar. She had her faults, yes, and that’s one of the reasons that I liked her mother. There were times when Colbie was around her parents that I wanted to slap some sense into her distant mother, but I also got where she was coming from. The whole idea of the book was for Colbie to find herself after leaving an abusive relationship, but she didn’t act like she wanted to heal at times. Still, her love of reading and all things literature and her friendship with Delia and Paige made up for the moments where she wasn’t the best in my eyes.
The story began with war—the traumatic event that left Zander Serrano with an amputated leg. His growth was more gradual. He started off cold and distant, and slowly started to become someone new because of Colbie and tried to get past some of his internal scars. I liked that he wasn’t perfect, and I guess it could be assumed that he balanced out Colbie’s near perfectness. He wasn’t my favorite male lead, but I did enjoy what he brought to the table, as far as the story as a whole was concerned.
The romance started almost instantaneously. So if you’re into insta-love—or more like insta-lust—then snatch this one up. The time in the story seemed to fly by. That could be because I read the book so fast, most of it in one day, or because time wasn’t really discussed. It sounds nit-picky, but did the seasons change? Is it sweater weather? I knew she was wearing a summer dress, but according to a random timetable that’s mentioned briefly in the inner dialogue, three months had passed. Anyway, I wanted a little more concerning the emotional connection the couple had. Their physical attraction was undeniable, but the emotional stuff they talked about didn’t seem as evident. By the end I did get how they fit as a couple, though, and liked how things turned out.
If you’re one of those people—*cough* me *cough*—that loves weddings, a second chance at love, and new adult literature, you should give this one a gander. It takes place in Princeton, and I was itching to hop on a plane to New Jersey just so I could see the town. Also, I would love to know what happened with some of the secondary characters and wouldn’t mind getting their stories. While it wasn’t my favorite contemporary romance, I did enjoy it and had to finish it, and I think you will, too.