Title: Broken Juliet
Series: Starcrossed #2
Author: Leisa Rayven
Release Date: 28th April, 2015
Genre: New Adult
How do you fix a love that’s been broken beyond repair?
For years, Cassie Taylor tried to forget about Ethan Holt. He was the one great love of her life, and when he failed to return her love, a part of her died forever. Or so she thought. Now she and Ethan are sharing a Broadway stage, and he’s determined to win her back. Claiming to be a changed man, he’s finally able to say all the things she needed to hear years ago, but can she believe him? What makes this time different from all his other broken promises?
Ethan knows he can’t change their tumultuous past, but if he’s going to have any chance of being with the woman he loves, he’ll need to convince Cassie that her future belongs with him.
Don’t miss this stunning conclusion to the unforgettable love story that captivated over two million fans online.
Reviewed by Rachel McEwan and Sharon Thérèse Nuttall
** Five Horrendously Badly Broken Stars! **
Before this review was written, the definition of the word ‘perfect’ had to be defined as this read was utterly perfect. Perfect ‘being entirely without fault or defect’. When you read a book, especially its sequel, there is usually something that you would change or tweak, but for KFF, this wasn’t the case. We didn’t just read it, we inhaled it, consumed it and this outstanding read in turn, consumed us! And although we’re the first to willingly admit to having put it down on a number of occasions, absorbing the feelings of these two fragile characters literally took our breath away.
At the end of Bad Romeo, our hearts were left in smithereens. So much so that this made us wonder whether or not the author was capable of mending the tiny shards piercing our very core. Why, you may ask? Well, this is simply because Ethan walked away from Cassie. He really believed he is doing the best for her. In short, he sacrifices his love for her for well-being, and if you didn’t die on the spot, both of us would be surprised. He can’t believe that he would be anything but poison to her both, personally and professionally.
At the beginning of their story, Cassie was the one who pushed Ethan; however, now we see the complete opposite. They say a turnabout is fair play, hmm… risky, too! Now Ethan wants Cassie back. After being apart for three years, he is willing to do anything and everything to achieve it. There is no doubt in Cassie’s mind that she still loves Ethan, but when we read ‘Bad Romeo’, Ethan and Cassie never had a problem with love or passion and for that matter, it was maintaining a relationship with all the attachments that young love has to offer. Foremost and utmost, trying to deal with Ethan’s hang ups was the crux of the matter.
Quote: Ethan ~ “Yeah, but only because she expected more from me. It took me a long time to expect more from myself. To see that being vulnerable takes a shitload more strength than being closed off and sullen.”
Does time heal scars so deeply ingrained? Does love flourish when comprehension is blown to the wind because a creature of whim is misunderstood and misunderstands all the blatant signals of love? It would seem so. However, in this read, nothing is what it seems to reader. This is a ‘perfect’ recipe for a phenomenal read. One has to mention that we have never ever laughed out loud, sobbed our hearts out and cried happy tears in the same paragraph. So get ready for all these emotions. Because yes, the author is an absolute expert in making us suffer regardless. Did you connect to these two phenomenal characters in the first book? We have no doubt that you will now as they have matured in all aspects. Love, love, love Ethan. Kudos galore for developing such an incredible persona. And Cassie! There are times when one writes a review and is lost for words. How on earth the author has hit her personality on the nail is quite unfathomable. Once again, ‘perfect!’
Quote: Cassie ~ “We’re two perfect characterizations, flawless in our denial.”
There are many exceptional quotes KFF could have cited in this review but to be honest, it would have ended up being a carbon copy of this book! Ms Rayven really does have exceptional literally skills! Please don’t think this book just gives pages and pages of angst because even though it is beyond heart wrenching, it delivers some brilliant one liners from not only Cassie and Ethan, but also from the secondary characters. A personal favourite of ours was from Tristan, Cassie’s flat mate who we fell head over heels with! He really tries to guide Cassie so she doesn’t get her heart broken all over again.
Quote: Tristan ~ ‘’Sweetheart, if you go much lower we’re going to have to re-examine my sexuality, and I don’t think either of us is ready for that right now.’’
Like Bad Romeo, this book flits from past to present which is vitally important and most certainly doesn’t spoil the flow of their story. The only way to understand Cassie and Ethan’s issues is by recapping every minuscule detail in their past which is done with so much finesse on the author’s part. How did we cope with it? ‘Perfectly!’ One tends to ignore the rewinding or fast-forward button. One king-size issue being what happened after Ethan breaks up with Cassie the first time when they were still in drama school. Assumptions were made wrongly. And, we may even add, were hurt dreadfully when Ethan walks away from her, all these concepts which we are led to believe, aren’t at all the truth. They still have drama school to graduate from and wow, this is where it gets more and more interesting. No spoilers here but just let’s just say things aren’t at the same point of no return between them.
Quote: Ethan ~ ‘’Do you feel this? This is what makes us keep coming back, despite everything we have been through. This is why I had to change, and why, despite how much I hurt you, you can’t walk away. The way we sink into each other. The way I can’t tell my heartbeat from yours. We have this perfect rhythm, whenever we’re together, and that’s the essence of us. It’s not just sex. It’s about this.’’
One very positive sign is when you’re reading a book and constantly checking how long you have left! Never stop checking as you won’t want it to end regardless of the outcome! This is exactly how we felt about Ethan and Cassie’s story. On the one hand, dreading the ending; on the other, willing it to end so we could find out if Cassie and Ethan get their happy ever after. Well, we hear you ask! Can they possibly find happiness which all of us are hoping for? Never say never! We cannot recommend this read highly enough. This is genuinely a book of true love between two very fragile characters but in different ways. One of Rachel’s favourite poets once said, ‘If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. And if they don’t, they never were.’
Quote: Cassie ~ ‘’Neither of us is perfect, that’s for sure, but when we’re together, our deficiencies are complemented by the other’s strength.”
One more word for those of you readers who haven’t read this series. Do! You won’t regret it! Only word for a ‘perfect’ read Ms Rayven. Bravo!
Writing has always been a passion for Leisa, and even though she originally intended to be an actress, it wasn’t long into her time at drama school that she began writing plays.
Those plays were bad. Very bad. Well, her friends thought they were good, but that’s because they were always cast in them and any opportunity to be on stage was met with an obnoxious amount of enthusiasm.
Since then, she’s honed her craft, and several of her plays have been produced and toured throughout Australia.
These days, playwriting has given way to fiction writing, and Leisa’s debut novel, BAD ROMEO, is available in a worldwide release through Macmillan Publishing in December 2014.
Leisa lives in Australia with her husband, two little boys, three cats, and a kangaroo named Howard.
(Howard may or may not be her imaginary marsupial friend. Everyone should have one.)