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Lighter (Begin Again Duet, #1)
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(Begin Again #1)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  394 ratings  ·  112 reviews
What do you do when you can't save the one you love?

Sophie can’t survive without control. Growing up with an alcoholic father, she craves the discipline of gymnastics. Feeling lost on a brand new college campus, she lets loose for the first time in her life. But with freedom comes consequences. Is one night everything she hopes? Or will she become her own worst nightmare?
Paperback, 311 pages
Published February 16th 2015 by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform (first published January 1st 2015)
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Average rating 3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  394 ratings  ·  112 reviews

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Nov 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
4 emotional stars
*arc provided in exchange for an honest review*

"Closing my eyes, I say a silent prayer that my luck will change- that someone will save me from the hell my life has become."

Whew. What an emotional ride!

The story centers around Sophie- an emotionally abused girl whose past is nothing short of a nightmare. Her life is irrevocably changed the minute she meets her roommates' brother, Kipton.

Oh, Kipton. I truly found myself falling in love with him alongside Sophie! He was so amazin
Reanell Tisdale
I'm impressed. 5 emotional stars!

I get a lot of requests for reviews either through my blog or from publishers. And it's impossible to say yes to everyone. So when Gia emailed my blog asking if we wanted to review her book, I read the synopsis and knew I had to read it.

As soon as I read the prologue I knew this book would tear me to shreds. And it did. It was a very emotional read. There are some touchy subjects for sure in Lighter. But Gia pulled it off fantastically.

Sophie was denied her cha
M.C. Decker
Nov 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kipton is mine! Everyone needs to read this book! Review to come!

This book ... I just don't have words that even begin to describe how this book absolutely touched me. I've loved Gia Riley's work since she came out with her first book, but Lighter is just in a world of its own. I loved her characters. Sophie is just living in a world of pain and you can't help but feel for her every step of the way. And, Kipton ... Kipton is just the perfect book boyfriend. He will steal your heart, just as he h
Jan 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Completely fell for the main characters in this book—Sophie, the sweet, troubled soul, and Kipton, the man who loved her. I related way too much to Sophie, maybe that's why I fell so hard for Kipton. Ladies, he is SOOOO swoonworthy.

This book contains lots of angst, a good deal of humor to balance out the angst, and then the heat ... there's lots of that between Sophie and Kipton.

Totally go check this book out!!!!
Kelly with Sugar Shack Book Blog
I will start by saying I have been looking forward to reading this book for months and was so excited when I was asked by the author to read for an honest review. Wow what an amazing book. I actually had to wait an entire day to write this review to let everything soak in. It was filled with so much emotion and love that I myself feel like I could burst.
First we meet Sophie who has basically dealt with it all, has been living a life filled with hurt, depressions, and not feeling she deserved to
Ashley Jasper
Feb 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I have been a tremendous fan of Gia Riley's work since I got my hands on her first release ages ago. This book is different from her earlier work but no less brilliant. The subject matter is heavier, even though the characters are younger. Oh the roller coaster this tale took me on! Be prepared to have your heart ripped from your chest and then put back together again, eventually.

Lighter follows the story of Sophie. She is a collegiate athlete and gymnastics is her game. For as long as she can
Marie S
Jan 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
5 shiny stars!!!!

Oh wow...I love this book, Gia Riley did it again and left me wanting for more!!!
Last year I came across with the first book of Gia and I fell head over heels with her work and talent. And since then she became one of my few one-click-no thinking-authors.

So I was really excited for Lighter and more so when I read it.

We have Sophie a beautiful but trouble girl whose upbringing has been really tough and her only let out is gymnastics. So she goes to College to start fresh and she
Sarah Armstrong
5 + Stars on this Beautiful. Emotional. Journey

This was my first Gia Riley book but it will definitely not be my last. This book dealt with a series issue with complete sensitivity. It was more than a love story & we do get a great one. It was one girls journey to find herself & love herself before she got her soulmate. Sophie & Kipton were an amazing couple, they both had issues to work out & they both made mistakes, but that was all part of their journey to each other. There were some twists i
Feb 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The growth that Gia has shown from her first book is noticeable. I love her books and fell in love with her first one.

But, Lighter is something different and real. From the beginning you are in the book. The story flows perfectly. The characters captivate the reader and you will not soon forget Kipton!

The instant connection between him and Sophie is strong. No denying these two want each other. But, life can't always be so easy. Everyone has a skeleton or two. coming clean can chase people away.
Mar 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars
“Hope. One simple word with so many possibilities. I like the sound of it.”

Lighter by Gia Riley was such a beautiful read. At first glance, Lighter may have seemed to be a light-hearted read, and in many aspects it was truly that. But, this book struck a certain note of remembrance for me that had me grabbing my box of tissues and cuddling up for a fantastic and emotional ride that satisfied all of the my book cravings.

“I melt like ice cream on the fourth of July. Take my man card, univ
Feb 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The words to describe this story is so hard simply because it's a phenomenal story. I was swept away by the depth of Sophie this poor girl was dealt a horrible hand in life. She lives with her dad and mom but her Dad is hateful to her treating her as if she's nothing. Her mom was a gymnyst so Sophie wanted to have her mother proud of her and get any attention she could. But as Sophie got older the hatred from her father only increased. She met someone who she thought understood her somebody that ...more
Whitney- Lifestyle of a Blessed Bookworm
Lighter was a unique read with a mixture of light and dark... It wasn't a sexual/murder/mind f dark, but a deep set emotional dark. Sophie has been through a lot. Her life has been a struggle and gymnastics has always been her escape. When she moves for college to follow her dreams, life seems to look up, but the darkness quickly consumes her and she falls back into her old ways. Sickness overtakes her body and mind... It takes the one and only hotty, Kipton to pull her into the light and show h ...more
Feb 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lighter is a touching and heartbreaking story of Sophie, a tortured soul who is struggling to find her way in the world. She's been raised by her mom and sorry excuse for a dad. Her boyfriend was abusive and her self-confidence is little to none. The only thing that keeps her together is her gymnastics.

So as she escapes her life and goes to college her junior year, her life drastically changes. Some for the better, and some for the worse. She meets her new roommate Cara who I just loved. She's c
Jan 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is my first Gia Riley novel, but it definitely won’t be my last. What a moving story! Riley tackles some really heavy subjects in Sophie and Kipton’s story. It’s heartbreaking yet full of hope and love.

Sophie transfers to her dream college on a gymnastics scholarship. Feeling the pressures of her sport and haunted by abuses in her past, she strives for perfection in everything she does. She didn’t count on falling for her roommate’s older brother, Kipton…or that he would fall for her too.
Feb 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
And.....Gia does it again!!

Wow, just finished this great story. I heard so many great things about this book while I was reading the first two books she had written. I am so damn glad I got this and read it.

This story has so many layers that make it great. Sophie is a girl that has priority in her gymnastics and moves to a new college on a scholarship and to work under a coach she has always dreamed to work under. She joins the team and thinks all her dreams have been answered. She has a strict
Leanne Michele
Jan 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I don't even know where to begin!! My heart and my stomach are one jumbled mess. I have tears streaming down my face and I finished the book a good 5-10 minutes ago.

To say that I connected or related to Sophie would be an understatement. Gia has written an amazingly beautiful, flawed character that you just want to reach through the book, grab her, and hug her. I wanted to tell her it's all going to be ok. When an author can write characters that grab you and wring the tears and emotions out of
Aubrie Brown
Nov 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Lighter. The title is definitely perfect for this book because once you read it, you really do feel lighter. This story is based on the successes and challenges of both Sophie and Kipton as individuals and a couple. Kipton is the type to know he can have anything he wants. That no relationship is serious for him. Until Sophie. Sophie uses gymnastics as a healing mechanism to deal with her fathers verbal abuse, her mothers blind eye and her ex-boyfriends physical abuse. And Kipton is the one who ...more
Big Joe  Rossi
May 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars...so close to my 5 star rating.

1st off Sophia is a great heroine. Strong yet broken. If I had this poor girls life I may have quit long ago.

Sophia has a crappy mom who seems to live her own dream thru Sophia's gymnastics, an alcoholic, verbally abusive dad and to top it off her form of dealing with it is an eating disorder. Let's not forget the abusive ex-boyfriend.

Now off to her dream college, to play for her dream coach she is free of their torment. Her room mate is wild and fun. Bu
Jun 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports, new-adult
Lighter is wonderful, emotional, and heartbreaking. Gia Riley writes with such knowledge and understanding.

Sophie's dreams have finally come true. She gets a college gymnastics scholarship. She can escape her home life. Or can she? Just because she's free, is she able to live in the moment? Or will the past 20 years ruin everything? When she meets her roommate, she has a new friend. When she sees her roommates brother, Kipton, she may have her boyfriend, too. That is, if she can make it through
Julie Foster
Beautiful story.

This is a beautiful story with beautiful characters.
Sophie is just starting her junior year away at college. She's going through many things in her life. I don't want to give any spoilers. She's a strong, independent young woman. I loved her from the beginning.

Kipton is Sophie's roommate's brother. He is the sweetest guy!! The things he says...swoon!!

Cara is a great side character! I absolutely loved her fun outlook on life, but her loyal attitude made me love her even more!!
Stephanie Rose
Jan 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lighter was a fantastic book and a beautiful story. It had everything, a main character so broken your heart breaks for her on every page, enough angst to chew your fingernails to the bone, and a very swoon worthy man who desperately loves his girl but can't quite reach her.

Sophie and Kipton have such an intense connection that goes beyond the physical (although the physical is pretty damn awesome). She comes out of her shell and lets people into her life because of the love he wants to give her
Nov 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was my first book by Gia Riley and I really enjoyed it! I haven't read a college romance in awhile and I loved going back to it. I almost felt like I was back in college, hanging out in the dorms and going to parties...a trip down memory lane!

I loved Kipton & Sophie's story. I really felt for Sophie throughout the story. She had some lousy situations to deal with along the way. I've never read a book with one particular issue that Sophie dealt with (I don't want to give anything away) and i
Feb 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
*This book covers some issues that may be sensitive for some people to read.* With that being said, if you have had any experience with individuals who have suffered any type of abuse and/or addiction (of any kind), I HIGHLY recommend you read this book. It gives insight to what they have experienced and felt and helps you to understand why they have certain behavior patterns. You will absolutely fall in love all of the characters. Sophie, Kipton (seriously swoon-worthy), Cara, Drew, and even Ca ...more
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Oh my...Gia is awesome..wait is hard for me to find words for this book. Sophie has lived an awful life both with her father and ex boyfriend. She doesn't know how to deal with life. After transferring colleges for a gymnastics scholarship she meets Kipton. There is instantly a connection but Sophie doesn't think she can do a relationship. Kipton never gives up on his feelings for her. I laughed and cried thru the whole story. So heart wrenching but it does show that not every family i
Feb 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book had me from the very beginning. I fell in love with Sophie and Kipton, even Cara I loved. As I read I cried, laughed, got angry, everything. This is the first book I've read of Gia's but it will definitely NOT be the last. Gia is going to be an author I follow and border on Facebook Salk (; words can not explain how excited I was for this book and it was so worth the wait! Amazing job Gia!! ...more
The Book Lover
Mar 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I just finished this amazing book and I have to say that I fell in love with all of the characters, its an amazing story about life, love, trouble and not feeling good enough to be loved. The book will take you into a ride of emotions.. one minute you will be laughing, the other your heart will be breaking and the next you will be flying away with love just as the characters are between these pages, I recommend this book without a doubt! pick up a copy
Paula Genereau
Jun 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a very good book. Sophie transferred to a different college. She meets her new roommate & instantly falls for her roommates brother. Little did they realize Sophie was going through some serious issues. It was causing all kinds of problems. While her & Kipton try a relationship he helps her more than she could have ever imagined. Finding out the truth behind some of her issues, Sophie doesn't respond too well. Can Kipton be enough to save her.

Kylie Frankel
Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have been a fan of Gia's since her first book and let me tell you, I was not disappointed with this book. Gia writes her characters with so much heart and she makes the characters come to life. I love Kippy so much with all of my heart. Gia kept the readers guessing with Sophie. I love her back story. I love everything about this book and you will too! ...more
Feb 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kipton is the perfect boy who helps show Sophie she "isn't broken, just bent & she can learn to love again" (~ P!nk) This is the first book I have read by Gia and I will be reading more, she created great characters who I want more of!
{A big Thank You to the lovely Mandi Beck who gifted me this book ♡}
❤️Melanie G.📖💛
This was such a beautifully written story.

Sophia has such a horrible life and was given a second chance at a new school.

Kipton was strong, sexy and always there, just what Sophia needed.

This book set off an abundance of emotions in me, from anger, frustration, joy, sadness and hope. All the contents that makes up a wonderful book.
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Bestselling author Gia Riley has been in love with writing romance since high school when she took her very first creative writing class. From the small but mighty state of Delaware, she’s a country girl at heart, traveling back to her roots in Pennsylvania as often as she can.

She’d rather pick truth than dare, bake than cook, and will always choose coffee over tea.

Just like life, her stories ar

Other books in the series

Begin Again (2 books)
  • Weightless (Begin Again Duet #2)

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