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Title: Behind the BarsMy Review:
Author: Brittainy C. Cherry
Series: Music Street #1
Published by: Indie
Release Date: December 7th 2017
Format: Kindle Book
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Reading Challenges: Lenoreo's 2018 #LetsReadIndie Challenge, Lenoreo's 2018 Beat the Backlist Challenge, Lenoreo's 2018 New Adult Challenge, Lenoreo's 2018 Platypire Diversity Challenge, Lenoreo's COYER Winter Switch 2017/18
Find it: Amazon ✩ Goodreads
When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.
I was the awkward musician, and she was the high school queen.The only things we had in common were our music and our loneliness.
Something in her eyes told me her smile wasn’t always the truth.Something in her voice gave me a hope I always wished to find.And in a flash, she was gone.
Years later, she was standing in front of me on a street in New Orleans.She was different, but so was I. Life made us colder. Harder. Isolated.
Even though we were different, the broken pieces of me recognized the sadness in her.Now she was back, and I wouldn’t make the mistake of letting her go again.
When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.When we met again, I became her darkest storm.
4.5 stars — Oh dude, that was all the emotions and then some. I don’t know why, but this book just hit all my buttons. I felt so much, my heart broke and it was healed. I just loved this one. I’m not even sure I’ll be able to accurately express what worked for me, but it just did.
One of the things that just really worked for me was the way the book was laid out. We got a really long good chunk in the past, when they were in high school. I’m sure that won’t work for everyone, but if it had been any shorter, I think I would have felt cheated, you know? It just set everything up so perfectly. It allowed me to truly see Elliott and Jasmine fall for each other, to see them connect in such an innocent and genuine way whilst dealing with some truly heartbreaking circumstances. I FELT IT. Their love was so freaking sweet and genuine and real.
I loved BOTH characters…which is not to say that I didn’t want to smack them sometimes. But they both had this intrinsically good core that made you love them, and want things to work out for them.
Past Elliott was sweet and good and kind, and just everything that I love in a hero. My heart broke for how he changed in the wake of the tragedy, but at the same time I could totally understand it wholeheartedly. It’s funny, b/c I actually had a harder time believing his transition back to himself when Jasmine comes back…it was on the edge of being too quick. But then I would look at the passing of time, and the circumstances surrounding TJ, and I could see it more.
Jasmine was hard on my heart b/c she was an abuse sufferer. I’ve actually known people who’ve been mentally/emotionally abused, and so I knew how realistically she was portrayed…but it’s still so hard as someone on the outside to watch her continually try to please her Mom, and continue to love her. You just want to scream noooooo!!! I appreciated that while she did some awful things for people (often in the name of those she loved), she did eventually grow and set boundaries and stand up for herself.
I think it’s funny that both Jasmine and Elliott couldn’t see the right path for themselves, but they could see what was right for each other…and in that way, they helped each other heal and grow. I loved how they each saw the other, how neither of them were judgemental.
I will admit that I had a really hard time reading the bullying parts…sometimes I would want to tell myself that it was over the top, but then I would remind myself of things I’ve read…sometimes bullying can go to such extremes. I was surprised, but I actually really appreciated how the stuff with Todd played out at the end of the book. I totally wasn’t expecting that.
A shining star in this book were the many memorable side characters. I love when my main characters have a great supporting cast, it helps you to understand how they became who they are. I LOVED Jasmine’s relationship with Ray…it was just so sweet and good. Similarly, I loved Elliott’s relationship with his Mom and Katie…even as that changed over time. I also loved his BFF Jason (and Kelly)! They were hilarious, and I was so happy to see him have such a positive relationship in his life, someone who stuck by him. And who couldn’t love TJ? He was da bomb dot com.
The best part about this book is that while it was heartbreaking, there were a lot of sweet moments mixed in to lighten it up. It wasn’t just angst from beginning to end, it was a range of emotions. I LOVED that. Can’t wait to read more from this author, so far I’m 2 for 2!