Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

Pieces of Love

Rate this book
Sixteen year-old Alexis Hartman wants nothing more than to smoke pot and play guitar. Getting high and escaping into her music seem the perfect solution when her world is shattered by her sister's death. But when she’s arrested for possession a second time, life couldn’t get any more complicated. Her mother's breakdown is the final straw that forces Lexi to spend the summer on the West Coast with her grandmother, Maddie. When Lexi steps over the line one too many times, she's certain her life is over and that she’s destined for juvenile detention—until Maddie decides that desperate measures are called for. A three week Mediterranean cruise—for seniors—should keep her out of trouble.

But Lexi has other ideas.

Eighteen year-old Ethan Kaswell, the poster child for good sons, is stranded on the cruise when his father, a famous heart surgeon, is kept away by an important consultation. With his own life perfectly mapped out, Ethan finds Lexi’s unpredictability irresistible. Although he’s smart enough to see that there is no future in falling for a “vacation crush,” Lexi’s edgy dark side draws him like an anchor to the bottom of the sea. As the two embark on the journey of a lifetime, can Lexi finally learn to love someone—even when she has to let them go?

289 pages, Paperback

First published June 8, 2014

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

P.J. Sharon

18 books90 followers
PJ Sharon is the award winning author of contemporary young adult novels, including PIECES of LOVE, HEAVEN IS FOR HEROES, ON THIN ICE, and SAVAGE CINDERELLA, winner of the 2013 HOLT Medallion Award and the 2013 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award. Follow the Savage Cinderella Novella Series with FINDING HOPE, LOST BOYS, SACRED GROUND, and BROKEN ANGEL. PJ is also the author of The Chronicles of Lily Carmichael, a YA Dystopian trilogy, which includes the award winning novels WANING MOON, WESTERN DESERT, and HEALING WATERS.

In addition, PJ Sharon owns ABSolute Fitness and Therapeutic Bodywork, a private practice massage therapy and personal training business in East Granby, CT. With over twenty-five years in the health and fitness industry, Ms. Sharon offers a multidisciplinary approach to wellness. Overcome Your Sedentary Lifestyle
(A Practical Guide to Improving Health, Fitness, and Well-being for Desk Dwellers and Couch Potatoes), her debut non-fiction title, is a holistic living, self-help book, sure to motivate readers toward a more balanced and active lifestyle.

Writing since 2007 and following her destiny to write romantic and hopeful stories for teens, PJ is a member of Romance Writers of America, CTRWA, and YARWA. She is mother to two grown sons and lives with her husband in the Berkshire Hills of Western MA.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
20 (48%)
4 stars
12 (29%)
3 stars
3 (7%)
2 stars
4 (9%)
1 star
2 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews
Profile Image for Tahlia Newland.
Author 22 books82 followers
June 15, 2014
‘Pieces of Love’ by PJ Sharon is the story of a grief-stricken, grumpy and slightly wayward teen sent to her grandmothers for the summer to keep her out of trouble. Lexi has been busted twice for weed possession and her mother is in hospital due to a nervous breakdown, so her stepfather sends her off to give the couple time to get things on an even keel without having to worry about her.

Grandma decides to take Lexi on a cruise around the Mediterranean, and Lexi isn’t pleased about it, not only because she’s going to be stuck on a ship with a bunch of old people, but also because she suffers from motion sickness. But this is a romance, so, enter the handsome young man and things turn out better than expected.

This is a character driven story. Unlike Sharon’s dystopian series, you’ll not find much action, but you’ll find character depth and growth, as Lexi’s relationship with Ethan and her don’t-call-me-grandma-call-me-Maddie grandmother deepens, forcing Lexi to face things she’s buried in a haze of pot smoke.

Lexi’s family has been shattered by two deaths, her father and her sister, both for alcohol-related reasons, and—though not to blame—Lexi carries a lot of guilt over her sister’s death. She needs to move on and the events in the book help her to do this. This is a teen romance, so expect the usual sensuality in the descriptions of the kiss and their physical attraction, but it is not overdone.

PJ Sharon has great expertise in portraying young people and the issues facing them. This is a very real story. It doesn’t skirt the difficulties, but it does leave readers with a sense of hope. The author has the confidence that comes from authors with several books under their belt and knows how to pull together the elements required for a good read. Though not racy, the pacing keeps you reading by doling out just enough tension in the relationships at the right time. The cruise ship setting also adds an exotic touch and the drama at the end is a clever and very realistic catapult for Lexi’s growth.

Overall, the book is well enough written in plain language very suitable for the young adult reader, and it deals with relevant issues in a skilful way. Highly recommended. 4.5 stars.

I received this book free of charge from the author in return for an honest review.
Profile Image for Beth  (YA Books Central).
415 reviews115 followers
July 29, 2014
Tiffany's Review:

Great Read! Really makes you think about the choices in life. Alexis had lost her dad and sister way to early in life. Her mom was suffering from a mental breakdown and Alexis thought everything was her fault. When she got into trouble for the second time she was shipped off to spend the summer with her grandmother, Maddie. Maddie is full of life and living out her days in California. Lexi as only been with her grandmother for a few hours before she finds herself in trouble again!!! Maddie decides to take Lexi with her on a cruise...not just any cruise....a three week Mediterranean cruise! Man did I miss out when I got in trouble at age 16! The reader gets to travel along with Maddie and Lexi on their trip and it sounds amazing! Of course there is some romance involved when Lexi meets Ethan, the only other young person on the cruise. Will Ethan be able to help Lexi see the best in herself?! Will they become a couple or go their separate ways?! I give this one 4 stars!
Profile Image for books are love.
3,131 reviews24 followers
June 26, 2014
When I began this book I did not like Alexis. I found her to be a shallow, uncaring selfish immature girl. A teenager like most but one who just wallowed in her own pity and self worth. She felt no one understood her, cared and all they wanted for her was what they wanted and didn't care what she wanted. Yes she was lashing out from guilt and pain but still she went to far. As the book went on though and Ethan (loove him love him did I say how much I love him) and Maddie were with her and helped her see things differently I began to see Alexis differently.

Alexis was a pothead in the beginning. A girl getting high to forget her sadness and guilt. She didn't care what it did to others. It wasn't until her mom broke down that she began to get a sliver of caring and even than it was just because she was leaving to go to Maddie's and couldn't get high. Than she gets to Maddie's and gets high with Seth and forgets about Maddie altogether not caring how she would feel because she wanted to party. Now that led to her being on a senior's cruise and even at the beginning she acted snotty and treated people horribly. Than Ethan came into play and she began to thaw somewhat. She still acted meanly at times but Ethan began to change her. She began to see what her actions were doing. Maddie helped as well by explaining things about regrets and consequences.

Eventually Ethan and Alexis begin to have feelings well for Ethan it was love at first sight because really that is the only way to explain why he put up with the way Alexis treated him for so long. As they got closer they learned about each other and fell harder. unfortunately Alexis cared more about getting high and this started to weigh on her and him. She began to see things in a new light slowly but didn't want to admit it until Maddie fell ill. This changed everything and her.

Her and Ethan got to know each other more and see who they were to each other. A story of finding oneself and seeing how to get past the guilt and sadness and fears so you can live. Finding love and support in someone who only wants your happiness. A pleasant read for the beach and anytime.
Profile Image for Rachel.
303 reviews2 followers
May 21, 2014
More of my reviews can be read on my blog Reviews For The Living And The Undead . Feel free to follow me. I love when people follow my blog.

Netgalley gave me this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

Pieces of Love by PJ Sharon

Lexi doesn't want to do much this summer but what she doesn't want to do is go on a cruise with her grandmother who she has hardly spent any time with. That is however what ends up happening. It doesn't take long for Lexi to meet another person around her age named Ethan. She soon finds herself growing attached to him despite the fact that she thought that this summer wasn't going to be fun at all.

First of all I would like to say that I didn't actually know that the cruise was going be the main plot of the book. I didn't even know there was going to be a cruise or maybe I did at one point and just forgot before I read the book. I did like that part of the book though and I found myself to be a bit envious of Lexi since I would love to go on a cruise of Europe or even just to Europe.

I loved how much Lexi grew as a person. She starts out as a rebellious teenager who has gone through a lot of things and is holding on a bit too much of the past, but as the novel goes on she grows up. The other characters don't change quite as much as she does which is too bad not that they are bad characters. I loved her grandmother. She is amazing.

I also found that the issues that Lexi faced were very realistic. A lot of teens have to go through that kind of things. Lexi also reacts to them like many teenagers would.

Overall I would give this book four out of five. I very much enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Mariam.
6 reviews23 followers
March 31, 2015
I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Pieces of love was very enjoyable read. This book is about love, loss, family, friends, death, living, and putting all the pieces of life together. This is a story about a girl finding her self. the book was very well. this is a story of a 16 year old girl Ali, who has had trauma early on in her life, and blames herself for a lot of things that she could have done that may or may not have lead to different results, in her mind. She has an experience of a lifetime, and slowly figures out more of who she is and what she wants to do in life on this journey she was forced into and with the help of a few people along the way.The characters were very well written and I fell in love with grandma Maddie she was amazing and knew how live and appreciate life. it's an amazing story with happy ending. :)
Profile Image for Julie (Bookish.Intoxication).
766 reviews32 followers
November 10, 2014
I received this novel from NetGalley.

This novel is moving and confronting, it focuses on the losses and progression of a teenage girl and her family, her coping, and her formation of love.

The plot is original and the characters are relateable. The drugs storyline is almost pointless though and adds a level of something that isnt needed within the novel, it almost feels too much. that being said, this is a great little novel.
Profile Image for Charlie.
423 reviews23 followers
July 17, 2014
Ah, pieces of love. We all have them…sometimes they just don’t fit together right, and we think we’re broken.

That’s exactly how Ali feels. She is a teen staggering under the weight of guilt and grief, and despite going to therapy, she’s slightly spiraling out of control. Her second arrest for pot sets of a catastrophic event in her house, and her mother goes away and she’s shipped off to grandmother’s…by her cop stepdad.

Only, Ali’s wants don’t end there. In Malibu, she meets a guy on the beach, which later also ends with her being taken home in a police cruiser. That’s when her grandmother, obstinately making it clear that she is Maddie and not “Grandmother,” announces that they are actually going on a seniors cruise in the Mediterranean…for over two weeks! Most people would be excited to get a free ride and see another part of the world, but Ali is not too terribly grateful for this “punishment”…because she gets motion sickness, and on the flight, well, let’s just say YUCK.

And the boy who that YUCK adorns is none other than handsome young Ethan, very out of place on the cruise. In fact, he and Ali are the youngest on the ship! Like Ali, Ethan has his own troubles with his father to work through, and even though their first meeting was less than spectacular, Ethan and Ali start developing this bond over the course of the trip.

Now, I know this sounds cliche – even Ethan points that out to Ali at one point – falling in love on a cruise in an exotic place with little supervision – but it’s not…at least not all. See, what Ali carries around is for the most part what Ethan has worked through himself, and he acts in a lot of ways as a mentor to Ali to try to help her see everything she’s harboring inside, and let some of it go.

I’m not going to lie, Ali (or Lexi as Maddie calls her) is a self-centered, selfish, angry person. I can understand – I was too after this event. But as time went on and I grew up, I started realizing things on a grander scale, and Ethan is there to help Ali along with these realizations, or at least spark some ideas in her head to get her thinking. By the end of the cruise, after a very scary medical emergency, Ali has grown up a lot. In a way, this is a coming of age book, and she realized that all the pieces of love were there…she just wasn’t looking.

Maddie and Ethan – I have to tell more about them. Maddie is not your typical grandma – she did some interesting things in her younger days, and always took these trips with her late husband. She is a fiesty, funny, nose-in-your-business woman, but she tries guiding Ali and Ethan in the directions they need to go. She is kind, sweet, and loving…and she loves spending money! Ethan, on the other hand, has already tried doing just that to get his father’s attention, to no avail. He is a very mature, gentle and compassionate 18 year old kid. He has this charisma about him that is very appealing and attractive, and catches both Ali and Maddie’s eye. I was very glad when Maddie invited Ethan to spend the cruise with the girls.

I struggled getting through this book to the 40% mark, I think in a lot of ways because PJ Sharon dangled bits and pieces of information about what Ali was holding inside, and I started getting frustrated. I also think my own parallel to Ali had me dragging my own feet for different reasons. But, I turned my Kindle sideways and magically it didn’t seem that I was trudging through a bog of mire. (I know I just compared this book to a bog of mire, but it’s not! I just couldn’t think of another metaphor.) I flew through the remainder of the book and craved the sights they visited in the Mediterranean.

This book covers some heavy emotional material, and having a similarity to the book, I thought at some point I’d cry, but I didn’t! I did, though, get very stressed at a few key scenes in the book. High emotion, high tension, WORDS.

I loved how the book ended. It brought meaning and life to some of the things that Ethan and Ali expressed to one another on the cruise, and overall it was a wonderful way to wrap up the book.
Profile Image for Maureen.
1,044 reviews32 followers
July 29, 2014
When I first read the description of ‘Pieces of Love’ I was immediately convinced this would be a book for me. It seemed to me like a perfect book to read on a nice summer day. I also really loved the cover. The blue of the sky and the ocean made this book that much more appealing to me. So I started reading this book on a nice hot summer day.

In ‘Pieces of Love’ we meet Alexis Hartman, A.K.A. Ali, A.K.A. Lexi. Lexi is a troubled 16 year old teen who got arrested for being caught in possession of Marihuana one to many times. When Lexi’s mom and stepdad send her away to life with her grandmother for the summer, Lexi is devastated and really angry. After Lexi gets into trouble on her first day at her grandma’s place, grandma Maddie decides to go with a different plan. And soon Lexi and Maddie are on their way to Europe to go on a three week cruise. Lexi is sure this cruise will be terrible. Being stuck on a cruise ship with only Seniors around for three weeks is no teens idea of a good time. But when things can’t go any worse for Lexi, she meets Ethan Kaswell.

Ethan is an 18 year old charming and good looking guy who’s also stuck on the cruise ship. Ethan is supposed to meet up with his dad, a well announced heart surgeon, but finds himself alone on this ship. Soon Ethan joins Lexi and Maddie on their trips. Although Lexi is terrified about caring for someone, she soon finds herself caring more and more for Ethan. And soon Ethan appears to be the one who saves Lexi.

From the very first page I really enjoyed ‘Pieces of Love’. PJ Sharon made sure we got to know the main characters and that made this book even more great for me. I really felt like I knew Lexi, Maddie and Ethan and I loved that.

Throughout the cruise Lexi goes on a journey to get in a better state of mind and she tries to get more control over her own life. Sometimes I found myself really understanding how Lexi felt. Lexi was just so confused, sad and angry about what happened to her and her family. That is pretty how I would explain my own feelings in my early teens.

The thing that made this book even more enjoyable was the traveling and all the details about all the places they visited. I also loved the song and the link to the website where you could see the pictures of all the places they visited in the book. This was a very nice bonus.

The character I liked the most was definitely Grandma Maddie. I would have loved to meet her if she was a real person. She was just so much fun and she really knew how to appreciate life.

This book was definitely a nice read and I really enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Gail.
Author 2 books485 followers
July 21, 2014

5 Star Pieces of Love is a spectacular, intriguing read. Sixteen year- old Alexis Hartman, in her attempt to escape her emptiness over the death of her sister, wants nothing more than to smoke pot and play guitar. Her mother has a breakdown after Alexis is arrested for possession. After attempts to rehabilitate Alexis fail, she is sent to her grandmother Maddie Hartman, in California for the summer. The astute and strict grandmother takes Alexis on the cruise she had booked previously. Alexis meets and is attracted to eighteen year-old Ethan Kaswell. who is traveling to meet his famous heart surgeon father in Italy. Ethan, who has his future planned and shows incredible depth and maturity, is attracted to Alexis’ unpredictability,.

Alexis’ youthful sarcasm and rebellious attitude is authentic. It fit her character perfectly. I connected with Alexis and could feel her pain. She strikes me as a real and strong heroine, who is going through a process of painful, but wonderful growth and self-discovery. Her grandmother Maddie was terrific, I loved her reprimands and lectures. Alexis’ relationship with her grandmother and the young Ethan kept me on the edge of my seat.

The author took me on adventures with the characters as they made visits to the towns and villages of Greece, Italy and Dubrovnik. Her images were descriptive and well-done. I could see and appreciate the architectural work, the art and the people of the places she took me to. I have fun on the cruise along with the characters. I am sure the author experienced all these places.

A wonderful page-turner.
Profile Image for Kenzie.
42 reviews18 followers
July 29, 2014
Pieces of Love was a good read and it is easy for me to give it four stars. The main characters are fun with loud personalities, and PJ Sharon did a great job developing them and tying them together. I found myself relating to Alexis, also known as Ali or Lexi, because of the way she reacted to the different struggles and difficulties in her life, I was the same way at her age. Alexis losing her dad and sister so early on, as well as her mom being put in a mental hospital, was hard on her and you can tell she blames herself for it. Smoking pot helps her alleviate some of the pain she feels and keeps her out of her own head. I only wish that my punishment growing up would have been being forced to embark on a three week long cruise around the Mediterranean with my grandma that I hardly knew and that hated being called grandma. Although most people would be ecstatic with that punishment, Lexi isn't. With her motion sickness and being stuck on a ship with no pot sounds horrible to Lexi and she isn't looking forward to the next three weeks.

I really enjoyed getting to go on the cruise with Alexis's grandma Maddie and Alexis! The details of the sights they saw were well written and made me feel like I was there with them. You can really feel Lexi's raw emotions throughout the book, especially when she finds herself falling for Ethan and opening up to him. Even though Ethan and Lexi are just teenagers, you can tell how good they would be for each other and how much they have helped each other. If this sounds like the type of book you would be interested in, pick it up! You won't regret it.
Profile Image for Anny hernandez.
1,182 reviews13 followers
June 23, 2014
I was provided a copy of the book by the Author for an honest review.

I just finish reading this book, and I love it, love the characters, and how the book turn out to be, I have to say that this book made me mad at some point, but I love every single minute of it, I am gone keep this short since I don't want to give anything away.

The story begging with Alexis she is sixteen years old, and she is being getting drop of by her stepfather to the airport, she is staying the summer with her grandmother, since her mother is in the hospital, and her stepfather cant not deal with her behavior, since all she care is about partying and smoking pot, once she gets to her grandmother she takes a walk on the beach, and meet a guy, lets just say that got her in trouble, and that's when her grandmother decide to take her on a cruised, what she was not expecting was to meet Ethan, now Ethan is eighteen year old, and he is the good type of guy, his father is a famous heart surgeon, Ethan is stuck their bore with nothing to do, but all that changes when he meet Alexis, what they both where not expecting was to fall for each other. Will they stay together one the cruised is over.

I really love and enjoy reading this book, love the chemistry between Ethan and Alexis, love how they are with each other, Author P.J. Sharon THANK YOU for introducing me to this awesome characters and this amazing book love it.
Profile Image for Renee Arthur.
7 reviews
February 15, 2015
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What a wonderful, full of life story...I absolutely loved this book! This is a story of a 16 year old girl Ali, who has had trauma early on in her life, and blames herself for a lot of things that she could have done that may or may not have lead to different results, in her mind. She is generally a teenager who is grieving and trying to numb out the pain of it all, and trying to figure out life and who she is and what she wants to do in her future. She definitely doesn't like it when anyone tries to tell her "who she is" and rebels a little, getting into trouble. This causes her to have to go away for a little while, which she desperately does not want but ends up having no choice in the situation. She has an experience of a lifetime, and slowly figures out more of who she is and what she wants to do in life on this journey she was forced into and with the help of a few people along the way. Pieces of love is a story you won't want to put down and I suggest every one read this book and enjoy...
Profile Image for Dunja *a chain reader*.
177 reviews84 followers
February 12, 2015
Pieces of Love is a coming of age story with romantic elements. Readers will follow the life changing trip of sixteen year-old Alexis Hartman. When I started reading this story I was constantly waiting for something really bad to happen to Alexis because she is a ticking time bomb. There were a lot of tragedies in her life and she does not know how to deal with them. She wasn't getting any support from her family. So she became rebel. But she is also a magnet for troubles and they find her whether she likes it or not. That is until she boards a cruise ship and meets Ethan Kaswell.

Ethan is totally different from Alexis...

Full review available on Night Owl Reviews
Profile Image for Jennifer.
417 reviews22 followers
December 31, 2015
Alexis has been shipped off to live with her grandmother after her drug habit pushes her mom over the edge and puts her into a mental hospital. Wanting to numb the pain of having lost her sister and her dad in an earlier accident, it isn't long before she is once again in trouble with the cops and now, her fairly unknown grandma. Instead of heaping on more punishment, Maddie (gma) decides to go on the cruise she intended to before Alexis showed up and take her along. The last thing that Alexis thinks will be fun is an elder cruise but that's until she meets Ethan who is her age and has been dumped by his famous dad on the same cruise.

Cliches rule this novel and it was painfully obvious what was about to happen every moment of plot advancement. Meh.
Profile Image for Kim.
766 reviews3 followers
July 24, 2016
I received a ARC of Pieces of Love by PJ Sharon an exchange for an honest review. I found Pieces of Love to be a quick read. I get a kick out of her Grandmother not wanting to be called Grandma or anything of the sort. She felt to young to be called that. She wanted to be called Maddie. I can totally relate cause that is what I said to my kids when they were having their children and now the best name in the world is Grammie. Lexi's life is such of a trouble teen who has gone through all sorts of events that lead her down the path of drugs. She needs up having to go spend time with her grandmother Maddie and they end up on a crusie. PJ sure did a great job with this story.
Profile Image for Joanne.
5 reviews3 followers
June 20, 2014
I found PJ Sharon's newest book Pieces of Love, to be thoroughly enjoyable! Lexi's voice was spot on, and although she wasn't always likeable, she certainly drew me in. Her growth from beginning to end was remarkable, with help along the way from her quirky grandmother and adorable love interest. This was a quick and fun book, that would make a perfect summer read. I received this book free of charge in exchange for my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Teri Donaldson.
314 reviews6 followers
November 28, 2014
What a fabulous story! I wanted to bring Lexi home with me and help ease her troubled soul. Ethan is wise beyond his years and Maddie is the kind of grandma everyone should be fortunate enough to have.
The author brought the characters to life and her descriptions of the cities and countries were vivid and beautiful.
I am 55 years old and adored this story even though it might be considered for younger readers. I look forward to reading other books from this author!
Profile Image for Eunice.
71 reviews3 followers
January 15, 2015
I normally absolutely love reading YA novels. It's my favorite genre. But this book. I couldn't get through the first 100 pages with snickering sarcastically at how insanely cheesy it is. I couldn't deal. Also, who markets their own song right in the first third of the book? Save that for the end or the table of contents. It really bothered me and kinda rubbed me the wrong way. Definitely not my favorite book that I've ever read. Sorry to say it.
1,353 reviews
February 4, 2015
Lexi is a troubled teen. She has gotten herself into trouble one too many times and gets shipped off to spend the summer with her grandmother. Once there, she gets in trouble again, so her grandmother decides to take her on a cruise with other seniors. Ethan finds himself on the cruise, without his father who has been called away. Lexi and Ethan are drawn to each other. Loved reading their story as they learn more about each other and love.
694 reviews16 followers
June 1, 2014
I'm sorry but I didn't get on too well with Pieces of Love. I found the writing somewhat immature and undeveloped, which made the storyline a bit stilted and the pacing off. As I always say with a less-than-great review though, reading is a very personal thing so you should give it a chance if you like the sound of it.
3 reviews
February 10, 2015
I received a copy of this book free for a honest review. I loved this book i was hooked for the start the emotional journey for Ali is epic! I could read this book over and over again i just loved not being sure of what is going to happen next with the very up and down main character Ali!!!! i give this book 5
Profile Image for Marian.
Author 14 books298 followers
July 27, 2014
PJ Sharon does it again with an intense, compelling story.
Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.