Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Blog Tour: Break Away by Ellie Grace {Review+Giveaway}

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Welcome to my stop on the Break Away blog tour hosted by Wordsmith Publicity!
Today I am excited to share my review as well as a giveaway with you all!
To see the full tour schedule click here.

Break Away
   by: Ellie Grace

Publication Date: Feb. 10, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: New Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by Wordsmith Publicity in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count:
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars

When Olivia Mason catches her fiancé cheating, her life gets turned upside down. With no family and no real place to call home, she heads south for a fresh start in Charleston, South Carolina. Determined to gain her own independence and protect her heart, the last thing she needs is a sexy, tattoo-covered guy to cross her path and test her resolve. Just as she’s beginning to put her life back together, she uncovers a piece of her past that shakes up everything.

Dex Porter has his own demons. A former Marine, he’s haunted by the past and uses whiskey, women and fighting to drown the pain and guilt that consume him. When Olivia arrives in town, he finds himself drawn to her immediately and is surprised by his desire to get to know her. She’s unlike anyone he’s ever met but he knows he can’t get close to her without exposing the part of himself that he keeps hidden.

As Dex and Olivia strike up a friendship and fight their attraction to one another, they begin to chip away each other’s walls and help each other heal. However, the past is never far behind and they soon learn that no matter how fast they run, it will always catch up with them.

"Life is full of pain and heartbreak, conflict and doubt... but there's also love and passion, joy and laughter... and it's the ups and downs along the way that make life worth living. It's not about cruising along a straight path, but about not letting the dips and twists take away from the thrill of the ride."
Break Away was one of those books that reminded me why I love new adult so much. It is a beautiful story of two people falling in love who both swore they wouldn't or couldn't. Both Dex and Olivia have their hesitations and fears and watching them overcome them together was such an amazing ride. I really enjoyed Grace's writing style and I felt the pacing went really well. I was quite emotional reading about Dex and his struggles as a former Marine who is coping the only way he knows how to numb and block out the pain of his tour in Iraq. Grace did an excellent job of portraying this deeply wounded man and show readers how his PTSD really dominated a large part of his life.
I really liked Dex's character, despite the fact that I hated how he used women as a coping mechanism to numb the pain. However, Grace did such a good job of showing us Dex's many layers and we realize early on that he is actually a good guy who has a lot of demons that he doesn't know how to overcome. Besides women, Dex uses fighting as an outlet to expel his pent up rage. He fights in an underground circuit and feels it takes the edge off when his nightmares consume his nights. He doesn't do relationships and has no interest in them.... until he meets Olivia.
Olivia is different from most other girls. She has some pain of her own and she also knows loss. Dex can sense there is a fierceness to her from the moment he tries to hit on her and gets shot down. As fate brings Dex and Olivia into each other's lives, the two agree to start a friendship together. Dex is happy to get to know her on a friends only basis, but the more the two spend time together, the more they feel their attraction to one another grow.
Olivia has just suffered a betrayal that would break most women in two. After walking in on her fiancée cheating on her with another woman, she makes the decision to uproot her life and head for a new beginning. I really liked Olivia too. She was sweet, caring, fun, and strong. She didn't let her dirtbag ex fiancée consume her life. She knew that she was closed off in their relationship. Her and her mother were abandoned by her father at a young age and she never wants to endure that kind of pain. She chose Steven, as she thought him to be a safe, uncomplicated choice. Instead, he was a jerk who just gave off the illusion of predictability. He controlled Olivia for four years and now she is finally breaking out on her own and she doesn't want to depend on anyone but herself. Olivia was afraid that she would be utterly alone in Charleston, but befriending Amy, her landlord and Dex's twin sister, and her daughter Sadie has really uplifted Olivia's spirits.
After seeing Dex with his niece, Olivia realizes there is more to the tatted up, arrogant ass she met on the beach. She is intrigued by him and wants to unravel his layers and get to know the real him. This proves to be a task, as Dex is very closed off when it comes to opening up. He is afraid of truly opening up to someone and letting them see the darkness and pain he has inside. Being with women who know the one night score is easy- none of them ever hold him accountable or try to get him to talk afterwards. Yet, Olivia is the one who crashes through his defenses and makes him want more for the first time in a long time. Watching the two of them heal and soothe each other's hurts is one of my favorite parts of the story, but getting to that point wasn't easy. Dex and Olivia were fighting what they knew was there between them- both of them afraid to truly give themselves to another person for fear they wouldn't be able to withstand what they discovered there. My, my, my! When they did finally get to that point- WOW, was it steamy! Grace knows how to write some delicious love scenes and I felt I was going to melt into my couch!
I really liked Amy and Sadie's characters. Amy was also abandoned by the man who impregnated her and is a single mom to Sadie. She really took Olivia under her wing and their friendship is one that Olivia desperately needed upon arriving. Sadie is cuteness with Dex, calling him Uncle Dee. You can really see just how much Dex is wrapped around her finger and I loved seeing that tender side to him. I also really enjoyed Nate, Dex's best friend. He ends up playing a key role concerning Amy, and I really liked his genuine, caring nature towards Amy and Sadie both. Fans of This Time Around will also get to see Nora and Jake and see how they are faring also!
Overall, I found this to be such an enjoyable read and I really liked the direction Grace took her characters. I wouldn't say this book is one that puts a new spin on New Adult, but I really loved reading it and watching even the most broken of people realize they can have happiness and hope in their lives.
Ellie Grace is an avid reader, chocolate lover and caffeine addict. When a story popped into her head that she couldn’t seem to shake, she decided to pursue her childhood dream of becoming a writer. When she’s not writing, she’s usually curled up with a book by one of her many, many favorite authors.

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  1. Hello! I just found your blog through twitter and I love it. I followed! I love to sit down with a good book, and you're the first book review blog I've found. Thanks :)

    Lyndsay @allmylove.blogspot.com

  2. This is a beautiful review Jessica. I'm just hearing about this book and it sounds wonderful. Personally I don't think every NA book needs a new spin, it just needs to be good. Gotta check this one out!

    1. Thanks Teresa! I was so blown away by this one! I never know what to expect from NA- it can go both ways, but this was definitely so good!

  3. Replies
    1. Loved it Ellie! I can't wait to see what you write next!

  4. I read this over the weekend and felt exactly the same as you! Dex and Olivia were portrayed so wonderfully, you just can't help falling in love.
    Great review, Jessica!

    1. Yay! This makes me so happy! I'm glad you enjoyed it too!

  5. Marine, sexy tattoos... yes, please!! HAHA Loved your review, and I really like the sound of the story along with the characters! I can't get enough NA, and this one sounds right up my alley!!

    Totally added this one to my TBR list!! :D

    Great review!!

    1. :D I'm all about these sexy Marines these days! Where's my own?! But, this was such a good read!

  6. Lovely review, Jessica! I like that although it's a typical NA story, it seems to have that little bit more. :) Dex and Olivia sound like a great couple and I look forward to reading Break Away.

    1. Thanks Brandee! I was starting to get burnt out on NA because I was tired of the same old, same old, but when you love the characters so much- it definitely trumps all!

  7. I'm always on the lookout for new NA romances and with the market flooded with new books everyday, I love to hear about ones that remind us why we love these books so much! I haven't actually heard of this one yet, but a sexy brooding marine sounds like my kinds of guy lol

    1. Yes! I agree with that Amy! These days there are so many coming out- they really have to shine lately for me to embrace them. This one definitely did!

  8. Aww this sounds fab! Defo more up my street than the average NA! Fabulouse review, will defo keep this one in mind!


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