Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: The Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski

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The Edge of Never
    by: J.A. Redmerski

Publication Date: Nov. 15, 2012
Publisher: Createspace
Genre: Contemporary
Age Group: New Adult
Source: e-ARC received from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 426 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars


Twenty-year-old Camryn Bennett had always been one to think out-of-the-box, who knew she wanted something more in life than following the same repetitive patterns and growing old with the same repetitive life story. And she thought that her life was going in the right direction until everything fell apart.

Determined not to dwell on the negative and push forward, Camryn is set to move in with her best friend and plans to start a new job. But after an unexpected night at the hottest club in downtown North Carolina, she makes the ultimate decision to leave the only life she’s ever known, far behind.

With a purse, a cell phone and a small bag with a few necessities, Camryn, with absolutely no direction or purpose boards a Greyhound bus alone and sets out to find herself. What she finds is a guy named Andrew Parrish, someone not so very different from her and who harbors his own dark secrets. But Camryn swore never to let down her walls again. And she vowed never to fall in love.

But with Andrew, Camryn finds herself doing a lot of things she never thought she’d do. He shows her what it’s really like to live out-of-the-box and to give in to her deepest, darkest desires. On their sporadic road-trip he becomes the center of her exciting and daring new life, pulling love and lust and emotion out of her in ways she never imagined possible. But will Andrew’s dark secret push them inseparably together, or tear them completely apart?
 

I have had my eye on this book for quite some time now, but wasn't able to fit it in until now. I confess, I already knew Andrew's dark secret that the blurb tells of, so at least I was emotionally prepared when we found out what that was. However, even knowing his secret, this book still made an impact on me. My only qualm is that I felt there were times where the story really seemed to drag and I found myself a bit bored. However, even with the slower pace, Redmerski does such a great job of setting the scene and focusing on building and developing her characters. It's easy to see why so many have fallen in love with the beauty of this book.

The book is told in dual POV between Camryn and Andrew, which I wasn't expecting. However, being the dual POV fan that I am, I loved it. I felt it was important to see things from Andrew's perspective. Both characters are dealing with some heavy emotional issues and my favorite part was watching them unravel each other bit by bit. Redmerski didn't rush their relationship and I found myself going crazy from the tension between them. But once they finally gave in, OMG- I swear that was the hottest scene I'd ever read.

Andrew storms into my room, letting the door smack the wall on his way in. He grabs me by my upper-arms, digging his fingers into my muscles.

"Why are you still afraid?!" Tears lace his eyes: furious, painful tears. He shakes me, "SAY WHAT YOU FEEL!"

His thunderous voice makes my body go rigid for a moment, but I shove his hands off me. I'm so confused. I know what I want to say. I don't want him to go but-

"Camryn!" His face is full of wrath and desperation. "Say whatever it is that you feel! I don't care how dangerous or stupid or hurtful or hilarious- TELL ME HOW YOU FEEL!" His voice sears through me.

He doesn't stop:

"Be honest with me. Be honest with yourself!" His hands wave outward toward me in gesture. "CAMR-"

"I want you, godammit!" I scream at him. "The though of you leaving and never seeing you again tears-me-up inside!" My throat burns like fire. "I can't fucking breathe without you!"

"SAY IT! Son-of-a-bitch," he says exasperated, "just say it!"

"I want you to own me!" I can hardly stand on my own anymore. Sobs rock my entire body. My eyes sting and my heart twists like it never has before.

Andrew grabs me, twisting my wrists together behind my back with one of his hands. He pulls my back harshly against his chest. "Say it again, Camryn," he demands, the heat of his breath bathing the side of my neck, sending chills throughout my limbs. I feel his teeth graze the flesh just below my ear. "Fucking say it, baby." His hand tightens painfully around my wrists.

"I belong to you, Andrew Parrish... I want you to own me..."

I love passionate scenes and this one really takes the cake. You may think it strange Andrew has tears in his eyes here or why he is absolutely so desperate for her to admit she wants him, but it makes sense later. And my heart was still unprepared for the onslaught of emotions I felt.

Camryn has been through a lot and so her heart has been closed up behind steel walls. She has seen the way her parents have interacted over the years- two people who may have been married to one another, but certainly weren't in love. She lost the one person she did truly love to a car accident, and then discovered her most recent boyfriend was cheating on her. With the exception of the boyfriend she lost, Camryn has not seen love in a very favorable light. After an incident with her two best friends, Camryn realizes she feels suffocated- she is drowning in the memories of her ex-boyfriend, of her family, her brother. I love that Camryn makes the decision to get away. It seems like the first real thing she's done for her in a long time and I think it was overdue. While it may not have been the safest decision she ever could have made- jumping on a Greyhound and traveling by herself- it was by far the best one she could have ever made. Not just because she found Andrew this way, but because she also found herself in the process. Andrew challenges her in every possible- makes her think about what she wants for her life, and really makes her reexamine her stance on love. After being betrayed by her best friend, Andrew is the one she finds herself opening up to- he is the one who makes her feel alive for the first time in years. It isn't without work though. Camryn feels it would be selfish for her to give herself to Andrew without really knowing what she wants. She doesn't want to hurt him and she certainly doesn't want to be the one hurt either.

"The heart always wins out over the mind. The heart, although reckless and suicidal and a masochist all on its own, always gets its way. The mind may be what's best, but I don't give a shit what my mind is telling me anymore. Right now, I just want to live in the moment."

However, Andrew is not without secrets. As easy as their camaraderie is, you can tell he holds back from her. At first we believe it is because well, they just met on a bus and he didn't want to come across as the guy who just wanted to get in her pants. And then you start to see it's something more. Andrew won't stand for just a bit of her- he wants all of her. He wants her to want him and know without a doubt he's the one she wants. Emotionally, Andrew is a bit closed off himself. He won't deal with his father dying, won't be the one to stay and watch him deteriorate in a hospital. In fact, he won't even attend his funeral. Yet, all of this doesn't mean he doesn't love his father or grieve for him when he passes. It does make you really wonder what is going on inside of his head. I adored Andrew's character, though. He is not afraid to put himself out there or go after what he wants. I love his spontaneity and he really does bring out the best in Camryn.

While this is mainly Camryn and Andrew's tale, Camryn's best friend Natalie, did play an important role. The two have been friends for a long time and their friendship is seriously tested in this novel. There is an incident with Natalie's boyfriend, and where Natalie should have taken her friend's side, she chose her boyfriend and that really stung Camryn. However, Natalie has been with her boyfriend Damon, for 5 years now, and I think she really struggled with the knowledge that he is a dirtbag and that Camryn would never lie to her and so she lashed out against the one person she knows would never hurt her. You want to hate Natalie for acting like such a bitch, but she does come around after having some time to really let what Camryn told her sink in. She ended up being there for Camryn during a very difficult time and I think that was what counted in the end. People make mistakes when they are hurting and I'm glad Camryn forgave her.

As many obstacles as these two go through, it really is a heartwarming story about two people finding one another, overcoming their fears, and simply learning how to live and feel alive. I will warn you- the last 1/4 of the book is an emotional one and you really find yourself cursing fate, as Camryn and Andrew already had enough to overcome as it was. But you know what they say, 'what doesn't kill you, only makes your stronger'. And this sentiment couldn't be more true in their case.

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16 comments

  1. This sounds like a really great book - the characters sound great and I love the excerpts you chose. Great review :-)

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    1. Thanks! It's such an amazing book! It definitely has a lot of passion, which I love!

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  2. WOW! I want to read more about those scenes :) I love a bit of intensity on my books
    Andrew sounds like a character I would love
    Great review
    Ruty@Reading...Dreaming

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    1. Thanks Ruty! This is definitely a passionate, intense book. Like I said, there were some times where I felt the story dragged a bit, but it's all worth it once you get to those other moments! :D I loved Andrew- I can't wait for the sequel!

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  3. Fabulous review girl! Reading this just brought back all my feels for this book. I loved the dual POV too and I liked how it was scattered instead of consistently alternating. The POV was in the most important perspective at the time. I also loved the slow build of their relationship because I am so sick of insta-love. Andrew is definitely a fave book boyfriend of the year for me. So glad you liked it :-)

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    1. Thanks chica! I agree- I liked the scatter method. Sometimes that can be tricky, but Redmerski did a great job with it. I do like the slow build too, but I did feel some parts were just maybe too lengthy, if that makes sense. I do love Andrew- he was super swoonworthy!

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  4. ohhh dear. Okay, so I also know the secret. Anddd. As a result, I'm totally scared. I can just tell I'm going to be a mess. I do have this one though! I need to read!

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    1. You do need to read it! And even though you know the secret it's still so worth it! I actually was happy to know or I might have freaked the hell out!

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  5. This is such a thoughtful and passionate story. And I so love that first scene you included.
    Great review, Jessica! I'm really glad you enjoyed TEoN

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    1. Thanks Andrea! This really was a great read, and I'm definitely glad I picked it up!

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  6. I am dying to make time for this book. I have heard so many good things about it and now that you enjoyed it too that just makes me even more excited. I really really really NEED to meet Andrew. Great review!

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    1. Yes, you do! He's awesome! :D I enjoyed this, but I wouldn't say it's one I would have pushed to the top of my TBR in retrospect.

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  7. I know a lot of people didn't like the slower parts but I did. I think it was necessary for their development. ANd yes, they had some VERY steamy scenes. Probably some of my favs ;)

    I am excited for the next book but I am SO SCARED to read it. I have a prediction about it and I am HOPING I'm wrong!

    Great review hon and I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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    1. I am so scared to read it too! I want that to be HAPPY!

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  8. Great review! I also really enjoyed seeing the two of them grow, and seeing Camryn get away from her life for a while. And the steamy scenes *fan* Though sometimes I felt there were a little many of those and a bit of a lack of plot. The ending wasn't my favorite but I'll definitely read book 2 when it's out :)

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    1. Thanks Carmen! I agree, Camryn definitely needed to get away from her life and I'm so glad it went the way it did.

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