BY KATE STEWART
Can you live a lie?
It’s a ghost town, this place that haunts me, the one that made me.
It’s clear to me that I’ll never outgrow Triple Falls or outlive the time I spent here.
I can still feel them all, my boys of summer.
Even when I’d sensed the danger, I gave in.
I didn’t heed a single warning. I let my sickness, my love, both rule and ruin me. I played my part, eyes wide open, tempting fate until it delivered.
There was never going to be an escape.
All of us are to blame for what happened. All of us serving our own sentences. We were careless and reckless, thinking our youth made us indestructible, exempt from our sins, and it cost us all.
I’m done pretending I didn’t leave the largest part of me between these hills and valleys, between the sea of trees that hold my secrets.
It’s the reason I’m back. To make peace with my fate.
And if I can’t grieve enough to cure myself in my time here, I’ll remain sick. That will be my curse.
But it’s time to confess, to myself more so than any other, that I’d hindered my chances because of the way I was built, and because of the men who built me.
At this point, I just want to make peace with who I am, no matter what ending I get.
Because I can no longer live a lie.
I feel like my heart was ripped out my chest, thrown on the ground and stomped on. Probably how Cecelia felt this whole freaking book.
We pick up immediately where the first book left off. The mysterious Frenchman who tore Dom and Sean from Cecelia. I MISSED them so much in this book. They made the last book for me and it just didn’t hit the same. This book was definitely more plot, less smut.
You know that scene in Twilight where Bella sits in a state of depression in front of her window for months? Cecelia compares herself to that scene. She’s been broken, discarded and used by those who swore to love her. It was rough to read and I just felt for her. We have no idea what’s really going on behind the scenes of the Ravenhood, but we sure as heck know who is pulling the strings.
Tobias was a lot. Like if you thought Dom was a mean motherf* then Tobias is 10x worse. I think you know where this is headed. Hello hate to love and give me all of it. I never get this “I’m different from other girls” vibe from Cecelia but damn girl how are you so lucky? Kinda.
This book is broken up into two parts. Before and After. The After felt like a completely different book. We see everyone 6 years later and it’s rough. Cecelia is a bada** bit** but kinda gives it all up to chase ghosts. She went so far only to regress I thought. We have to go back to that town where it all went down and see just how much has changed without her there. It was hard for me to read. Like it was so well written that I was pained reading it.
Exodus finally gives us the answers to everything. It wrapped everything up that had been eating away at me for almost two books. It’s not a light read though and definitely got under my skin. It also managed to get a few tears out of me. I can’t decide if I want to read the third book or not since I like the idea of an easy happy ending, but this whole series hasn’t been easy so far so it feels like a cop out. We’ll see, but it definitely all didn’t go down how I thought it would. I missed the men in this book and wish Cecelia had gotten all the rainy days with her love.
A NOTE ABOUT KATE STEWART: Since this review was written, it has come to light that Stewart has written a number of books that include blatant racism. While this book is one of the few that doesn’t contain such content, we will no longer be reviewing or promoting any of her books.