What do you do when you realize you were foolish enough to throw away true, unconditional love?
Lorraina Dabney turns her back on her creativity and tumultuous upbringing to embark on a college career that will lead her to law school and to becoming what she values most in life—a controlled, powerful, respected woman. When she stumbles upon her childhood friend's artwork, she feels inspired to reconnect with him and her former self. This onslaught of emotion will send Lorraina in a tale-spin to figure out exactly why she abandoned all that she was, all that she could've been.
Coming from his own chaotic upbringing, Michael falls quickly and deeply in love with Lorraina at a tender age. Even her rejection can't stand in the way of his obsession. When she starts to date other boys, however, Michael finally relents, causing him to spiral further into a world filled with violence, drugs, alcohol, and women. Realizing that this lifestyle will only lead to his further estrangement from Lorraina, Michael sets about to turn himself around before going to get his girl.
Michael Bang will have Lorraina questioning everything.
Michael hops out of his still running Jeep, and I can hear “Desperado” pouring out of his speakers. He makes his way back to my car, and I get out and lean on my door. He puts his hands in his pockets, pushing them down into fists and looks at me shyly. We just spent the entire night together and he’s shy! Typical Michael and his contradictory nature.
“When can I see you again?” I ask. I’m done being coy and shy and nonchalant. I know what I want and I’m going to get it. Afraid he may see all that in my eyes, I look away a little.
“When do you want to see me again?” Oh, who’s playing coy now, Mr. Bang?
“Well, I’ll be home for spring break,” I tease and glance at him.
The look on his face says he’s done with coy. Good! Got his attention! “This afternoon?”
“I can’t wait,” I declare. “So, what is this?” I gesture between the two of us. “Is it safe to say that we are dating or that we are boyfriend/girlfriend?” I bite my lip. I couldn’t resist asking; but now that I have, I fear his response.
He shakes his head and grins at me. I fight the sudden urge to run my hands through that silky midnight hair of his. “Always so quick to label and categorize. I guess that’s what will make you an excellent attorney. Assess. Label. Categorize. Add up the W’s. ” He leans in a little and whispers, “How about we just go with the flow? See where it leads us. Label later?” He raises his brows, offering my type-A dominant personality a direct challenge.
Caution to the wind, very atypical for me, I reply, “OK. I’m up for it.” Challenge accepted. “You?” Challenge returned.
“You bet, Lorraina,” he rasps softly.
He leans into my door and places his hands on top of mine. I’m suddenly quite anxious and ever so grateful for the door between us. My hands get clammy and my heart races. Blood races and pounds in my ears, making me feel very much awake now. One hand moves up to brush my hair from my forehead and moves down feather light until his knuckles brush across my cheekbone and lips. He pulls his thumb slowly across my lips. It’s excruciating. It’s exquisite.
Both of his hands come forward to frame my face gently, and he pulls me in for a kiss. A too quick kiss. It’s over before I realize it’s even begun. He gives me a half smile and turns and walks away.
“Michael!” My voice barely sounds human. More animal in nature. It’s raw with ache.
He turns and takes two long strides back to me. This time when he grasps my head it’s anything but gentle. He pulls my lip in and nudges my lips open with his. All rational thought escapes me. I mirror his grasp and enjoy the fullness I feel with him in my mouth. I give as good as I get. This kiss is nothing like our two before. I savor it.
When he turns to walk away, I release a long pent up breath. If he would’ve looked back, he would’ve seen that I was the one on my knees now.
Excerpt: “I can’t stand by and watch him use and discard you,” Michael says resignedly. “Well, you’re in luck!” I snap. “You don’t have to. We aren’t even a part of each other’s lives anymore. I don’t know anything about the man you’re turning out to be other than you are reminding me a lot of my dad, and you don’t know anything about me. We just need to wish each other well and forget about each other.” My comment hits home. He knows that I value my dad about as much as I value pond scum. I regret it immediately. He nods his head and looks me up and down for a minute as though searching for something or committing me to memory. He jerks his head once in a final nod. “Alright, I’ll see ya around then.” My voice turns apologetic as I watch him back away from me. I never wanted to hurt him. I try to move towards him. “Michael, I—” He throws his hands up, warding me off. “No, it’s all good. Take care, Lorraina. See ya around.” My
Have you ever read a book that left you so incredibly emotionally raw that it was all you could think about for DAYS after you finished reading it???? That is exactly how Every Rose left me feeling. I only hope that my review gives this book the justice it deserves and can relay the awesomeness that is Lynetta Halat to you! I am still reeling from the emotional roller coaster ride that I was on during this book and I don't know if I want to yell at or hug this author!! Lynetta Halat is an evil genius and her story SUCKED me in from page 1!!
Every Rose follows the life of Lorraina and Micheal, neither of whom have had the easiest or most honorable upbringing. Michael was the town's outcast because he was a Native American and Lorraina was an outcast because of her father. Micheal decides at an early age that Lorraina is his future wife and pursues her with no holds barred. Lorraina, however, wants to only be friends and tries to persuade him (and herself) that there isn't anything between them but friendship. She decides that if he can't be friends, then they can't be anything and they part ways.
Fast forward to the ripe age of 22. Lorraina is now about to graduate college and has applied to law school. She goes home to visit her family over Christmas Break and runs across a piece of artwork that looks very familiar. It just so happens that the artist is Micheal and Lorriana is hellbent on reconnecting with him to see how he is doing. She finds out that he is playing a show at a local coffee house and plans the reunion. From the first note out of his mouth she is bombarded with memories and Lorraina now has to face the facts that she may have made the biggest mistake of her life by telling him to get lost all of those years ago. Will Micheal still have feelings for her and believe she is his one true love, or has he moved on and dropped that thought like a hot cake?
The story of how their reunion goes and what happens next must be read. There is no way I am going to spoil that, nor is there any way that I can write their story and hook you in as well as reading this book for yourself! I give Every Rose a solid 5 stars on the knock my socks off scale!! If my scale went to 10.... this book would get a 20!!! I will warn you, you may want to grab a box of tissues and make sure you have a full day ahead because once you start reading Every Rose... you WILL NOT stop!! I devoured this book in one sitting... forget kids needing to be fed, forget feeding myself! I HAD to know what happens with Lorraina and Micheal and there was NO WAY I could bookmark and come back later! I laughed, cried, laughed some more, and ugly cried... I mean U-G-L-Y cried!!! Face puffy and red, eyes swollen, tissues gone.. ugly cried. This story is so incredibly touching that it has sent me into a book hangover!! Kudos Lynetta Halat... you definitely have a permanent fan at R is my TO!!!
About the Author:
For as long as she can remember, Lynetta Halat has lived to read and has written countless stories and plays since she was a young girl. A teacher by day and an avid reader and closet writer by night, she has always dreamt of penning books that people could connect with and remember; and her first novel, Every Rose, is the perfect catalyst to launch her into the world of publishing. Her love of the English language prompted her to pursue a master's degree in English from Old Dominion University in Virginia. A self-proclaimed “Coast Girl,” she lives in Mississippi with her adorable husband, two amazing sons, and two loveable dogs. She is currently at work on her second book.
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