Ghosted by J.M. Darhower is releasing this week, on the 24th, and if you are going to read an indie new adult romance, you have to check this one out! Thank you very much to the author for the advance reader copy in exchange for an honest review. My opinions were in no way influenced and you can read my review below!
Category: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Publication: August 24th, 2017
He’s a troubled young actor, Hollywood’s newest heartthrob, struggling with fame as the star of the latest superhero franchise. Through scandal after scandal, addiction on top of addiction, a flurry of paparazzi hunt him as he fights to conquer his demons.
She’s a single mother, assistant manager at a grocery store, existing in monotony with her five-year-old daughter. Every day when she goes to work, lurid tabloids surround her, the face of a notorious bad boy haunting her from their covers.
A man and a woman, living vastly different lives, but that wasn’t always the case. Once, they were just a boy and a girl who bonded over comic books and fell in love unexpectedly.
When Kennedy Garfield met Jonathan Cunningham back in high school, she knew he had all the makings of a tragic hero. With stars in his eyes, and her heart on her sleeve, the pair ran away together to follow their dreams.
But dreams, sometimes, turn into nightmares.
Now, years later, the only thing they share is a daughter—one who has no idea her father plays her favorite superhero. But Jonathan is desperate to make amends, and at the top of his list is the woman who gave up everything for him and the little girl he hasn’t yet met.
Ghosted: The act of suddenly ceasing all communication with someone the subject is dating, but no longer wishes to date. This is done in hopes that the ghostee will just ‘get the hint’ and leave the subject alone, as opposed to the subject simply telling them he/she is no longer interested.
So, did I think the above definition described what this book was probably about? Absolutely. Was I wrong? Absolutely.
Now anyone who reads my reviews (if any of those people exist, haha) knows what I am about to say. I’ve said it a hundred times. But, I’m gonna say it again:
I AM A SUCKER FOR A SECOND CHANCE ROMANCE.
And when that story is told brilliantly? Well, I’m happier than a clam at high tide. So that last bit there? That’s me right now. I am on a HIGH! A reading high—one which I haven’t seen the likes of in months. Sure, I’ve been “reading.” More forcing myself to finish books I’d picked up. Or closing others within pages because I just couldn’t stay interested. I’ve been looking for a book to turn this reading slump on its ass. I have been unsuccessful. Until now.
I came across this when someone shared the author’s Facebook post. I saw the cover, saw the summary, saw the call to bloggers, and yeah, I couldn’t resist. The words Second Chance Romance will grab my eyeballs every time. Added to that cover and I was SOLD. But I still worried. My reading mojo has been shit. I hadn’t read this author since Sempre. What were the odds that this would be the book to break the non-reading spell? In my eyes, not very good. I should have bet against those odds.
Ghosted was everything I wanted and more. Seriously. I picked it up and within sentences, Darhower hooked me. Claws sunk in.
Darhower has done the (seemingly) impossible. She combined comics, fandoms, and contemporary romance. It’s not even a little bit nerdy, yet it works. Her execution is flawless.
Speaking of the romance…
You know when your heart races and it’s because of the angst? Not because of the sexual activity that some readers long for, but when they’re apart and you’re learning their past and you know all the feelings are still there, but one of them is still denying it and their chemistry is off-the-charts and the wait for them to finally realize it is almost too much and you just want to scream or rip your hair out or skip to the pages where the happy happens? This book has all of that in spades and then some. I was utterly consumed by this story.
Ghosted is thankfully told from two points of view—three if you count the notebook that relates Kennedy and Jonathan’s past. In this way, we get the story in its entirety. And while not all at once, you are able to re-live it…as you wait for the eventual downfall. The present day stuff is heartbreaking on its own. Watching a guy try to turn his life around, be better, is one thing. But watching him struggle as he realizes all he’s missed in the past is even worse. And then there’s Kennedy. The single mom who has made a life for herself and her daughter. She’s fiercely independent. She doesn’t trust Jonathan, and really, who could blame her? Been there, done that, got the kid. And while she’s trying to protect her daughter, she’s also consequently protecting her own heart. As these two clash around each other, it feels inevitable that they will eventually return to their past. The only question is how far will they go? And will it be enough this time? Will it all last?
I should also mention how I loved each and every character. Almost. There are a couple of assholes, whom you’ll be able to pick out very early on. But the rest? It’s like when a movie releases and you watch, realizing every actor is exceptional and perfect for their role. They feel like real people. I could picture them clearly. Heck, most are people I’d love to hang out with!
And for all its seriousness, there is humor to be found. Meghan and Jack provide a shit ton of comedy. I found myself laughing often throughout the book. Maddie herself even provides some little kid fun and earnestness that you can’t help but love and chuckle at.
I read this book in one sitting. I haven’t done that for a long time. In months, I think. The characters, the plot, just everything are perfection. I couldn’t have asked for a better book to fall into my lap.
*ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*