by Marley Valentine
Published by Amazon
Release Date: June 1, 2023
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, LGBTQ+, M/M, Romance
Format Read: ARC, eBook
Buy on Amazon
When I met Leonardo Ricci, he was determined I would only be a fling, while I was certain he was my forever.
Seven years later, we're the perfect couple. Happy, married, and in love-in sickness and health, till death do us part.
At least until the unthinkable happens.
Now we can't look at each other. We don't sleep in the same bed. We can't even be in the same room. The loss is too great and the pain runs too deep.
But this man is the love of my life. I convinced him once, and I would be damned if I couldn't do it again. I would be damned if I couldn't fix what we broke.
I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I have been waiting.
LORD HAVE I BEEN WAITING.
I read Without You by Marley Valentine two years ago. TWO YEARS.
I have read every single book she has published since I read that magnificent work of art.
Nothing, I MEAN NOTHING she has written since, has lived up to that novel. That beautiful masterpiece.
I AM NOT JOKING, if you haven’t read it yet, go read it immediately)
Here is a link: WITHOUT YOU BY MARLEY VALENTINE
This review is not about Without You. As much as I could wax poetic about it.
This review is for Marley’s latest novel, What We Broke.
It is a stand alone (with a few special appearances by my Without You boys), but you don’t need to have read one to enjoy the other.
AS I WAS SAYING.
I HAVE BEEN WAITING.
YEARS AT THIS POINT.
And Marley finally, finallyyyyyyyy delivered me some of that same magic. The magic that I felt when I read that first novel (Without You- incase you didn’t know which book I was referring to).
What We Broke was just a special, magical, heartbreaking experience to behold.
I literally sobbed on page TWO.
What We Broke was a raw and honest look at a marriage between two people who loved each other and just got so very, very lost.
I’m not typically interested in reading books about marriages that are in crisis. Troubled marriages just make me sad and I can’t relate to that particular trope. But, this is Marley, so I went in, not expecting much, and then was delivered something so wonderful.
This book is explicit, it is tragic, and if you have triggers based off of divorce and marital problems, alcoholism, grief, child loss, and pregnancy trauma then definitely check the content warnings.
Jesse and Leo were meant for each other, really and truly. They both knew it too. But tragedy struck their lives and they grieved separately, they grew apart. Like two boats lost in the same sea.
Leo was traumatized and Jesse was barely hanging on, it just made my heart ache for them.
It was interesting to read about a couple who had no real hatred for each other, just grief and sadness clouding the love they still had for each other. It wasn’t anyones fault they fell apart, they just did. AND THEN, to read Jesse’s point of view and how steadfast and loyal to Leo he stayed, even when it was tearing him apart…
JESUS H. CHRIST.
AND THEN LEO. POOR SWEET LEO. Who never really cared for himself in the first place, who needed love and support his whole life, who found it and threw it away because he was just broken hearted but not with his husband. MY GOD SOMEONE GET ME MORE TISSUES.
MAYBE A XANAX, I DO NOT KNOW WHAT I NEED! (neither did Leo tbh).
What We Broke was about a father who fell apart but then accepted responsibility for his neglectful actions. A husband who never wavered even when it broke his own spirit. It was about a family who was grieving after a great loss and finally found their way back to each other in the end.
I cried a lot, some happy tears for sure, most of them were tears for the characters. The dual point of view made this book even more gutting. The insight to each character really brought every point home.
I loved it (obviously) and I think Marley Valentine has finally found her stride again.
Emily is a coffee loving, cat snuggling, hairstylist and book-a-holic.
Having always been a voracious reader and devouring books at a breakneck speed, joining the bookish and blogging community seemed like a natural next step. She loves giving recommendations to friends and family and then very gently (and not forcefully at all) asking for their opinions after they complete each chapter.
Her reviews tend to be goofy, a little sweary, on the more impassioned side and maybe sometimes a little self deprecating.
Emily typically enjoys reading almost every genre, including (but not limited to) monster romance, literary fiction, rom-com, contemporary, LGBTQ+, low/urban fantasy, paranormal, dystopian, sci-fi, gothic romance or basically any book that will make her cry.